The Flag as Graven Image

Andrew Reding writes a commentary that the flag-burning ammendment which has passed the house violates the First Ammendment, and the First and Second Commandments. An excerpt:

The First Amendment was adopted to prevent the government from limiting dissent in any way. It is inherently anti-idolatrous. As Gen. Colin Powell wrote to Sen. Patrick Leahy in 1999,

“The First Amendment exists to insure that freedom of speech and expression applies not just to that with which we agree or disagree, but also that with which we find outrageous. I would not amend that great shield of democracy to hammer a few miscreants. The flag will still be flying proudly long after they have slunk away.”

Should the amendment be passed by the Senate and then ratified, it would for the first time incorporate religious language into the Constitution. The great irony is that it would do so to venerate a secular object — the symbol of an often exemplary but still fallible nation-state — violating the most fundamental tenets of the three primary religious faiths of the American people.

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Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father. Member of the Podcast Hall of Fame class of 2022.