Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Good News File

On June 22, the House of Representatives passed a bill calling for a Constitutional Amendment to ban flag burning. The House has passed such a bill with some regularity throughout my adult life. It has always gotten shot down in the Senate, although the last time it was only by two votes. Given the current make-up of Congress, I suspect that this time it may make it through.

While that is depressing, there was some good news issued by the First Amendment Center :

Another key finding of the 2005 survey is that 63% of those surveyed oppose adopting a constitutional amendment to give Congress the power to punish flag desecration as a form of protest — up from 53% in 2004.

The survey was conducted before to the 286-130 vote in the U.S. House on June 22 to approve a proposed amendment that would give Congress the right to pass laws prohibiting “physical desecration” of the American flag. The measure is now before U.S. Senate, which is expected to consider it sometime after July 4.

“This is a very emotional issue that asks Congress and the nation to balance two powerful considerations: A widespread desire to honor this most-venerated symbol of the nation and a bedrock element of American democracy, freedom of speech,” Policinski [director of the First Amendment Center] said. “The survey results show that an increasing majority of Americans have second thoughts about amending the Constitution to deal with the issue of flag desecration.”

Hopefully there will be enough senators this time to resoundingly defeat such a proposal, but if not, it does appear that there are enough Americans around who understand the true significance of and the necessity for free speech in America.

Good news.


Post a Comment

<< Home