Thursday, June 23, 2005

on flag burning

proc was kind enough to point me in the direction of some flag burning posts this morning, so I'll pass them along for your consideration. you might get a laugh... and then a pretty serious look on your face as you continue reading.

http://www.scalzi.com/whatever/003585.html

what does happen when you burn an american flag?

http://news.yahoo.com/fc/us/civil_liberties
and a little commentary from Sean on the above link:
<koden> "Symbols are everything in politics. They can get you elected or defeated. That's why Democrats fear getting singed by a proposed flag-burning ban, forced into a vote that Republicans will cast as a test of patriotism."
<koden> Fucking retarded.
<koden> It's nice that we live in a world where style is more important than substance.
<koden> That article is a perfect description of why I hate Republicans and Democrats.
<koden> http://www.hutta.com/store2/products/1002

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_burning

and a flag desecrator in action! - http://www.metaphoria.us/FlagPatriotism/Dubya_signs_flag.jpg

(credit for all of these links goes to other people. I'm just aggregating them here.

burning united states flag

personally I'm for the right to burn the flag. freedom of speech. I think putting that much force behind nationalistic imagery... it's leaning towards the trappings of fascism. dissatisfaction with a symbol should be allowed to be expressed, not repressed. it's just a piece of cloth, regardless of what it stands for.

people need to start realizing that we have to STOP MAKING IT ILLEGAL TO FUCKING OFFEND PEOPLE. IF I'M NOT HITTING YOU, HURTING YOU, STEALING FROM YOU OR OTHERWISE ENDANGERING THE SAFETY OF ANOTHER PERSON, YOU CAN FUCK THE HELL OFF. YOU DON'T HAVE A RIGHT TO NOT BE OFFENDED, BUT I (AT LEAST USED TO) HAVE THE RIGHT TO FREE SPEECH. Jesus Fucking Christ... does anyone actually have the slightest concept of what our founding fathers wrote down? I'm really starting to wonder.

*smack* *smack* *smack* *smack* wake up and quit whining! this is the kind of ignorant bullshit that happens when people are too busy trying to make everyone else happy, and everyone is afraid to tell someone else they're being stupid because they're afraid to offend them. in the meantime it becomes ILLEGAL TO OFFEND ANYONE. and just spirals into abject idiocy... and what's fucked up.. is that once these rights start flying out the window, and you've handed them over to the government... you can rest assured, YOU'RE NOT GETTING THEM BACK WITHOUT A VIOLENT FIGHT.

take a fucking lesson from history people and WAKE THE FUCK UP.

EDITORS NOTE:
Mike pointed out a shortcoming of my post... and he's probably right. the problem was, I kept editing this post to add to it. it originally didn't have the blurb from Sean, or some of the additional links, or everything including and below the picture etc. I had at one point stopped before that last rant part.. but added it for some reason. I guess the more I thought about it, the more pissy I got. :(

<proc> largo: in your latest blog post, everything is all fine and dandy and then BAM, you hit with the last 2 (and a sentence) paragraphs, where you just go bananas
<proc> save the caps and emotes dude, if you would've continued in the same tone as the rest of your entry, it would've been teh awesome(er) [sic]

ah well. shit happens. I'll keep it in mind for next time.

<proc> 1st corollary to Godwin's Law: First person who uses The Matrix as an example in existenialism related rhetoric loses the argument
<proc> 2nd corollary to Godwin's LaW: First person who uses CAPS in an argument loses the argument
<proc> 3rd corollary to Godwin's Law: If the argument is on /., SA, or Fark everyone loses.

7 comments:

TaraMonster said...

i hear what you are saying sunshine. I worry about the state our society is coming to.

Anonymous said...

"Does anyone have the slightest concept of what our founding fathers wrote down?"

Well for starters, they didn't really give you the absolute right to free speech.
CONGRESS SHALL MAKE NO LAW...

Phreadom said...

historically the only area to which it did not extend was in such cases as yelling "FIRE!" in a crowded theater, which was likely to cause phsyical harm etc. or specifically calling for the death or harm of another person.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_Speech

a little more specifically.

although in the case of preserving "Morals", I'd have to say that I don't agree with that aim. if I want to speak out for gay sex, many could and probably would argue that I was being immoral. because they don't agree and don't want to hear it, and because it goes against their religious beliefs, am I to be prevented from saying it?

it's obvious that our "freedoms" in the United States are not even REMOTELY unfettered freedoms. we are not very free at all when it comes down it... just more free than a lot of other countries etc.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miller_test

I think we can go into a long discussion about this. I hold out for the preservation of the right to speak my mind rather than censoring someone for the sake of trying to prevent someone simply being offended. I would hope that this isn't hard to understand.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Amendment

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

well, obviously the government didn't give a shit about not establishing religion... "In god we trust", "one nation under god"... so why should they care about making no law abridging the freedom of speech? of course they're going to pussy foot around the issue and say that including god in our national motto and pledge of allegiance isn't REALLY establishing a religion... and that prohibiting a whole slew of different types of speech isn't really prohibiting free speech in general.

yeah. of course.

sorry, but I think I don't agree with slowly letting our rights be pissed away... eroded away... while people continually numb to the loss until the point where nothing really phases them anymore. like thinking the USA PATRIOT Act is actually a good thing, and worth giving up essential rights and liberties for. because of the implied threat that we are all in imminent danger... so we have to allow searches into our homes without our notification, without real judicial oversight, allow ourselves to be locked up without charges or access to legal representation... to allow video camera into every nook and cranny of our lives... because this is supposed to prevent things like 9/11. even thought in reality we have a better chance of being attacked by a shark than being the victim of a terrorist attack. and because the 9/11 hijackers were caught on film and it didn't stop them.

the government has created a climate of fear and used that as justification to give us a reason to willfully give up our rights and freedoms. rally around the flag! rally around god! or you must not be a patriot! if you don't love god and the flag and our president you must be a terrorist! etc...

there is a very dangerous mindset at work here.

like I said... people need to take a lesson from history.

Lisa said...

Being too worried about offending people, and you become Canada.

I understand what you're talking about. Canadians are absolutely obsessed about being politically correct. Even if, to be politically correct, it involves going against what the majority of Canadians think.

I remember we were having a debate in class, and I spoke out my opinions about something or another. The whole class shuddered as I said it. That's what it is up here - you have freedom of speech, until it has the potential to offend anyone else. Then you have to keep it quiet, or sugarcoat it.

Ugh. Canadians are so wishy washy. I just wish that we, as a country, would grow a spine.

Frankie said...

lisa, unfortunately our country has been and will stay wishy washy, I believe, for some time to come. and it's not just the way we talk to each other, in foreign politics as well. always trying to please and to comply to other countries, especially the US...

as for the flag burning, I find it is quite telling that the us won't let their citizens express their dissatisfaction with - the symbol, the government, the policies, whatever the flag is for them- it tells that they have a reason to believe that their citizens have reason to be unhappy with it, so just force silence on the people... on this issue, at least.

Lisa said...

Well, I can understand the governments reasoning. You don't just march into a church and burn a Bible - it's kind of similar. To forbid flag burning goes hand and hand with the patriot act.

By burning the flag, you're saying "America I hate you, go to hell". Or at least that's the way I take it. Because the flag is more than a symbol of the government, it's a symbol of the country...they people in it, it's "values", what it was founded on, yadda yadda yadda.

It reminds me of British Columbians. They vote in one leader, get mad at him, vote in another, complain about them, vote in another...it just goes on and on. British Columbians ask for something, and when they get it they change their mind.

I realize that a lot of unhappy people didn't vote for Bush - but, as I said before, to burn a flag I think represents more than simple dissatisfaction with the government. And the majority of voters did vote for Bush. Like it or not, he's the leader of the country.

Anyways, I think flag burning should be allowed. Freedom of speech and all that. But the overall message is "I hate this country"...so if you hate it that much, why not move?

Maybe it's just all for show.

Phreadom said...

you don't burn a bible inside the church because it's a fire hazard, not to mention that you're on private property etc.

just because burning a flag WILL piss people off, doesn't mean that's a valid reason to make it illegal. the same as the fact that there is NO valid reason to make it illegal to stand on the street corner and say "I would like to fuck my girlfriends pretty mouth.". period. free is no longer free the moment you start putting restrictions on it. then you are permitted to do some things, not free to do as you will.

as for moving to a different country, I think that's a matter of deep seated patriotism and indoctrination. we really do "love our country" for whatever reasons. we really do believe we're the best country on earth. couple that with the fear and ignorance of what it actually entails to try to become an actual citizen of another country. do you get branded as a traitor to your country? do you get in trouble? do you have to learn a whole new way of life? are things really bad enough to reject your country and leave friends and family behind to move to another country?

I've actually considered a lot of these things... and it still feels to me like I'd rather fix the problems here than revoke my rights as a citizen of the United States etc... for a lot of the reasons I stated above and probably a host of others that I simply haven't been perceptive and introspective and self-ware enough to really see and/or understand.

say it's like a mother loving a child... even when that child gets addicted to drugs and steals from her... she loves that child... that child is a part of her... and she will probably never be able to stop loving that child as her own... and wishing for the best in them... and trying to help if she can to "fix" them.

loving someone or something doesn't always mean you're happy with it or them. it's means you love it or them and just want the best for it or them.