Okay. I get that flag burning is seen as unpatriotic and some people have a problem with it. Do we really need an amendment banning it? Aren’t there more important things that need to be debated and legislated than flag burning? Is flag burning a matter of life or death? Does flag burning limit our pursuit of life, liberty, and the American Dream? How exactly does an amendment banning flag burning affect the American people? The only flag burning I see is being done by people not in this country (e.g., Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan, Iran, etc.).
By the way, the proper way to dispose of a used and tattered United States of America flag is summarized as follows:
“There are several ways in which you may give your American flag the proper retirement without showing disgrace to this great country. If you would like to dispose of the flag yourself then the most fitting way is to hold your own, private ceremony. The U.S. Flag Code states, "The flag, when it is in such a condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferable by burning." After your flag has been burned, the ashes should be buried.”
This begs the question: “If I burn it for disposal purposes would I be breaking the law if the anti-flag burning amendment were passed?”
The real answer as to why the Republicans are hell bent to debate such trivial issues like flag burning is a simple one. In the run up to the fall elections, the politicians are acting like second grade school children. They figure that by “debating” such legislation as flag burning, gay marriage, and the Iraq war they will have ammo come fall. They can point to their opponent and say that he/she is an unpatriotic, pro-gay that does not support the military. In other words, it is a simple child’s game being played with our tax dollars. It galls me that people in such seats of responsibility can be that careless, inconsiderate, selfish, and moronic.
Off hand I can rattle off at least 10 things that are more important than a flag burning amendment.
1. MEDICARE REFORM – Fix the ill-conceived Medicare program before it totally cripples our economy. Any expert worth their salt has been saying for years that this is a huge looming problem. The completely ridiculous and costly prescription drug plan only makes matters worse. Thanks for mortgaging my children’s future for AARP votes.
2. SOCIAL SECURITY REFORM – Fix the ill-conceived Social Security program before it totally cripples our economy (notice a trend here?). Again, thanks for not discussing this to pander to the AARP crowd. And yes, John Kerry, saving social security includes cutting benefits. Anyone that can do math can understand that the current system is not sustainable without HUGE payroll tax increases that will result in an enormous burden on generations to come.
3. ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION – Enforce the existing laws, hold employers accountable, and secure the border. This should be a simple fix but both parties are playing the numbers here. Both parties want the future Hispanic vote.
4. BALANCED BUDGET – Stop being irresponsible with our tax dollars and start being fiscally responsible. Here again, pork = reelection.
5. ENERGY POLICY – Figure out a meaningful energy policy to start eliminating our dependence on fossil fuels. The United States of America should be the leader in this field. It just makes economic sense, whether you agree with Al Gore or not. And to all those limousine and leer jet environmentalists, get off your high horses and embrace the wind farms that ruin your precious view. Don’t preach to us and then go all NIMBY.
6. HEALTH CARE – It is a crying shame that the “richest” country on the planet cannot provide adequate health care to all its citizens. (I say “richest” because we have an $8 trillion national debt and much more than that in consumer debt.)
7. REAL CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM – Stop giving me the bullshit line about it limiting free speech. Not much of a level playing field if I run against someone who happens to be a multi-millionaire with lots of money to spend on radio and TV adds and I being a simple civil/environmental engineer have very little money to spend on such frivolities. Personally, the ads never affect me because I happen to be able to look at the facts instead of swallowing every hook, line, and sinker on TV. Not to mention that the billions of dollars wasted on these elections is morally reprehensible.
Okay, I could only think of 7 things. At least it would be a start in the right direction.
If the waste-of-skin politicians cannot even do 1 of the 7 things I listed above, they should at least provide us with some flag burning safety legislation. I mean, a serious fire could be started by accident while waving around that burning flag. Not to mention the toxic fumes released by burning the polyester flags. EPA could get involved and do a risk analysis. NOAA could do an analysis of the proper weather conditions for flag burning. OSHA could draft some safety regulations. It would at least justify some of the fat in those governmental organizations.
Photo from http://www.theodora.com/flags/new8/flag_burning_1.html