Friday, June 30, 2006

It seems I was wrong.  I wrote on my June 27th blog that flag burning was not protected until the 1960’s and 70’s.  According to an article published in the Peoria Journal Star on June 28, 2006, page A1 the change occurred later.  The Supreme Court ruled “in 1989 and 1990 that burning and other desecrations of the flag are protected as free speech….”  Consequently, in relation to our 200+ years of independence, flag burning has been protected for less than twenty years of that long history.  It is now protected not by Constitutional provision but rather by Supreme Court edict.

As I wrote on that blog of the 27th, the Senate failed to pass the proposed Constitutional Amendment by one vote.  The following information is from  If you go to that website, you can get the Senate roll call votes.  It is a handy site to visit to find out how your Senators and other Senators are voting on issues.

However, I was right about another comment I made.  Senators Dick Durbin and Barack Obama from Illinois voted against the Constitutional Amendment.  Senators Kerry and Kennedy from Massachusetts voted against the Constitutional Amendment.  Not surprisingly, carpetbagging Senator Clinton voted against the Constitutional Amendment.  In all, three Republicans, one Independent, and thirty Democrats voted against the Constitution Amendment.  The thirty-four culprits included:

McConnell, Republican from Kentucky
Chafee, Republican from Rhode Island
Bennett, Republican from Utah

Jeffords, Independent from Vermont

Pryor, Democrat from Arkansas
Boxer, Democrat from California
Dodd, Democrat from Connecticut
Lieberman, Democrat from Connecticut
Biden, Democrat from Delaware
Carper, Democrat from Delaware
Akaka, Democrat from Hawaii
Inouye, Democrat from Hawaii
Durbin, Democrat from Illinois
Obama, Democrat from Illinois
Harkin, Democrat from Iowa
Mikulski, Democrat from Maryland
Sarbanes, Democrat from Maryland
Kennedy, Democrat from Massachusetts
Kerry, Democrat from Massachusetts
Levin, Democrat from Michigan
Lautenberg, Democrat from New Jersey
Bingaman, Democrat from New Mexico
Clinton, Democrat from New York
Schumer, Democrat from New York
Conrad, Democrat from North Dakota
Dorgan, Democrat from North Dakota
Wyden, Democrat from Oregon
Reed, Democrat from Rhode Island
Leahy, Democrat from Vermont
Cantwell, Democrat from Washington
Murray, Democrat from Washington
Byrd, Democrat from West Virginia
Feingold, Democrat from Wisconsin and
Kohl, Democrat from Wisconsin

In the past and possibly even today far away from the prying eyes of the public, we know that individuals murdered and sacrificed young children in the name of religion.  We also know that some acts are so repugnant that they can not be allowed even if done in the name of religious worship.  

The same is true for the deliberate burning of the American flag as a form of political protest.  It is repugnant.  We know that freedom of speech is not unlimited.  Freedom of speech has never been nor should it ever be an absolute freedom.  We also know that effective political protest can be accomplished without burning the American flag.  We further know that such action was not allowed until recent Supreme Court decisions allowed it.  

The original writers of the freedom of speech amendment did not intend that clause to be used to allow illegal acts to be committed in the name of freedom of speech.  Freedom of speech referred to political debate on the issues of the day—not actions.  The Supreme Court redefined speech to cover acts committed.  Now, because of that redefinition, literally thousands of different actions might be defined as free speech—chaining oneself to a tree, nude dancing, burning the flag, burning an empty building, going on a hunger strike, burning oneself alive, bombing a building, laying in front of automobile traffic, human sacrifice of young children, smoking in a no smoking area.  Name an action: to the Supreme Court it might be protected as free speech!!!  I have no doubt that if the writers of the Amendment were alive today, the vast majority of them would look the members of the Supreme Court in the eye and say: “You lawyers!!!  Actions are not speech!  We were talking about political debate; not disobeying the laws of the nation.  By your imposed definition, any thing could be defined as free speech.  How ignorant can you be!!!”      

The Constitution of the United States does not allow flag burning as political protest.  The decisions of the United States Supreme Court allow it.  Congress has every Constitutional right to propose a Constitutional Amendment to reverse a repugnant Supreme Court decision.  

Is it time to remove libertine Democrats from positions of power in this nation?


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