Trump proposes penalty for citizens who burn American flag

There must be consequences — perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail, says US president-elect


News Desk November 29, 2016
This file photo taken on October 22, 2016 shows President-elect Donald Trump during a campaign event at the Eisenhower Hotel in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. PHOTO: AFP

US President-elect Donald Trump has proposed imprisonment or forfeiture of citizenship for those Americans who burn the country’s flag — an act which is protected by two rulings of the country’s apex court under the First Amendment as a form of free speech.

“Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag - if they do, there must be consequences - perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail!” Trump tweeted.

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/803567993036754944?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

In at least two previous instances in 1989 and 1990, the US Supreme Court upheld the right to desecrate the American flag as a form of free speech.

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In the 1989 case "Texas v Johnson," the top court ruled that flag burning was a form of "symbolic speech" protected by the First Amendment. The ruling followed an appeal from Gregory Johnson, who had been convicted by a Texas court of violating a state law that prohibited the "desecration of a venerated object" such as the US flag.

The following year, in "United states v Eichman," the top court again affirmed the right to burn the flag when it ruled that the Flag Protection Act of 1989 - passed by Congress in response to the Johnson decision - was unconstitutional.

This article originally appeared on CNN

COMMENTS (1)

dubious | 4 years ago | Reply Burning American flags has created a small thriving business in Pakistan - doubt that's going to help Trump/Pakistan relations.
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