Tuesday, December 06, 2016
Trump Suggests Revocation of Citizenship, Jail Time for Flag Burners
Calling flag burning "speech" is ridiculous. It's just another Leftist distortion of the plain meaning of words. With Trump's new appointments to SCOTUS some sanity may return
Trump spokesman Jason Miller told CNN this morning that flag-burning is not constitutionally protected speech. "Flag burning should be illegal," Miller said. "The president-elect is a very strong supporter of the First Amendment, but there's a big difference between that and burning the American flag."
The Supreme Court ruled in Texas v. Johnson (1989) and United States v. Eichman (1990) that flag-burning was free speech protected by the First Amendment. The latter case ruled that a congressional bill to ban torching the Stars and Stripes was unconstitutional.
Late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who referred to himself as an "originalist," defended the right to burn the American flag.
"If I were king, I would not allow people to go around burning the American flag -- however, we have a First Amendment which says that the right of free speech shall not be abridged -- and it is addressed in particular to speech critical of the government," Scalia told CNN in 2012.
"I mean, that was the main kind of speech that tyrants would seek to suppress," he added. "Burning the flag is a form of expression -- speech doesn't just mean written words or oral words -- burning a flag is a symbol that expresses an idea. 'I hate the government, the government is unjust,' or whatever."