Thursday, June 23, 2005

Constitution burning

Who knew that the First Amendment posed such a threat to the republic so as to require its stamping out in the guise of a burning flag?

Yes, the flag-burning amendment is back, having passed the House yesterday afternoon. Though the passage of such expressions of contempt for the Constitution has been standard-issue in the House for some time, in the past, the Senate could be counted on to do the right thing. Alas, not this year. (Long live Terri Schiavo.)

When it comes to the trampling of rights via the Patriot Act, the rationale is always the need to deter terrorists before they inflict another wound on the order of 9-11. So what is the rationale for stomping the First Amendment at its root, in our nation's founding document? The sacred nature of the flag, we're told. Your blogstress does not recall a single Founder writing of the sanctity of the U.S. flag. In fact, your cybertrix seems to recall that the Framers were extraordinarily careful to avoid words like "God," "Creator" and "sacred" in the text of the Constitution.

The current amendment effort in the Congress has more to do with matters temporal than sacred, of course. It's about the 2006 congressional elections. Republicans love to harangue Democrats for an alleged lack of patriotism during election campaigns. No voice votes on this one--everybody will surely be on the record.

If the Democrats had the guts, they'd be out there haranguing the Republicans for their obvious lack of patriotism. After all, what is more sacred to the American experiment: the flag or the Constitution?

Your Webwench would like to see a protest on the steps of the Capitol whereby 214 copies of the Constitution, one for each year of the Bill of Right's existence, are burned. Because that's just what these craven, power-consolidating fear-mongers in the House are doing--moving us ever nearer the tyranny of which Jefferson warned.

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