The Ministry of Shadows

Last Five Entries

Gone, But Not Forgotten?
Friday, Jan. 20, 2012

What The Internet Will Look Like Under SOPA
Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2012

Fearsgiving Week
Monday, Nov. 21, 2011

Jesus Approves of Waterboarding
Monday, Nov. 14, 2011

Beware of Asteroids
Wednesday, Nov. 09, 2011


FirstGov Portal

Legislative Database

Recommended Reading


Bruce Schneier

James Hudnall

Glenn Greenwald


You Are Dumb

All links are current as of the date of publication. All content created by the author is copyrighted 2005-2010, except where held by the owners/publishers of parent works and/or subject materials. Any infringement of another's work is wholly unintentional. If you see something here that is yours, a polite request for removal or credit will be honored.

Rallying Around The Flag

Tuesday, Jun. 27, 2006 1:52 AM

To some, the question of whether or not the American flag should be protected against desecration by a Constitutional amendment is one of great importance.

From this corner, it's a waste of time. We have North Korea ramping up for a missile test, Iran still playing catch-me-if-you-can with its nuclear program, and more than a few senators who think Iraq's new government is crazy for offering amnesty to insurgents.

But apparently there's time enough to spend close to a week haggling over protecting the flag.

Without question, the act of burning the American flag is a serious matter. But it is often done to antagonize or provoke unreasoned response from people, and I'd much rather have any kooks or protesters inclined to such demonstrative actions get those destructive impulses out of their systems ... rather than have that kind of anger and resentment festering behind closed doors.

Nor would this amendment serve as a true deterrent. Imagine a protest; a crowd gathers, and from its midst, an American flag is hoisted, already aflame. But no one is holding it; it's propped up in a trash can or by other means. No one saw anyone wield a lighter or lay hands upon the flag. It can't even be determined if there was speech to incite the act or not.

How, then, can we enforce the spirit of the amendment and protect the flag? Arrest everyone standing around the flag and pat them down for lighters and matches?

And are we talking about all expressions of the flag? Can a child's rendition of the Stars & Stripes in crayon be protected? What about flags hanging proudly from car antennae until they are frayed by the wind?

It all reminds me of the Star Trek episode, The Omega Glory, where the flag and our keystone documents were regarded as sacred items, worshipped by rote � with no understanding of the meaning or symbolism behind it.

"You no burn holy," Cloud William might say. "Holy is protected by Chiefs, and sons of Chiefs!"

The true defense of our nation's colors must come by teaching our history, so people understand it stands not for any single part of America, no single event, no single person � elected official or otherwise.

An amendment against desecration of the flag only establishes one thing � that we believe America is entirely invested in the flag, and that she can be lessened or diminished by an act of protest.

Rather than restrict protesters who might choose to express their distaste or anger through such an act, we instead grant them power over us.

The Ministry has received 0 comment(s) on this topic.