Opinion: Should Flag Burning Be Made Illegal?

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If youʼre not living under a rock, you know that there is a push to ban the burning of the American Flag. Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) introduced the idea of an amendment that would make burning “old glory” illegal. This has received ample support, including from President Trump.

There you have it, the mad man himself endorses this legislation. The president’s strong wording has of course gotten the trolls riled up, because what else is new?

As much as I hate to say it. Dr. Eugene is actually right on this one. My stance on this is basically the same as it is for the folks who knelt for the anthem. I hate that anyone would feel the need to disgrace the American flag or our national anthem, but they should be allowed to do it. If we truly say we care about freedom, we have to even when we may not like it.

Most anti-American sentiment out there in the mainstream is a product of misinformation and ingratitude, but people need to be allowed to be misinformed and ungrateful, no matter how much we hate it.

On a secondary note, using our veterans and war heroes as a club to make these arguments is also something I find off- putting and exploitative. I donʼt think that itʼs a coherent argument either. While these people fought for the flag, they fought for freedom, above all else. While I like where Sen. Daines, President Trump, and othersʼ hearts are, this is where we right-of- center people lose potential allies and converts. Conservatives/ Republicans canʼt say that theyʼre the party of freedom while endorsing legislation that – while small and specific – limits freedom of speech.

There are enough people on the other side of the aisle who are trying to encroach on our freedom of speech, albeit for different things. In a society that is becoming increasingly secular, the right doesn’t do as well selling morality to the voting public. Obviously morality is still important, but the ship has sailed on “moral” issues such as gay marriage and cannabis.

Freedom is something that will always be integral to a large percentage of Americans. There is a vast swath of people who consider themselves “politically homeless” (shout-out Dave Rubin). There are a lot of center-left moderates and classical liberals who no longer share values with the 2019 version of the Democratic Party. Inter-sectional identity politics and socialism are not popular with most of the country because this goes against the freedom that America embodies.

Trying to limit the first amendment isn’t a good way to show that you care about that freedom. Letʼs practice the freedom we preach and allow anti-American weirdos to get their five seconds of attention. Outlawing the burning of a literal symbol of freedom is a bit ironic, wouldn’t you say?


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