Flag Burning lunacy

Scott Adams (of Dilbert fame) recently wrote about the proposed flag burning amendment. It's worth repeating in part:

I was delighted to learn that American politicians are trying to make it illegal to burn the American flag. That can only mean that my dedicated public servants have finally solved the problems of crime, drugs, war, poverty, terrorism, healthcare, immigration, and the mystery of why our children are such idiots compared to Norwegians. Evidently those issues are now under control. I was starting to worry that Congress was wasting my tax dollars doing stupid shit.

I heard Senator Frist compare the flag to a national monument. His point was that you wouldn't want people to deface our one-of-a-kind historical treasures. Therefore we shouldn't let people burn an American flag that is one of millions churned out every year by Chinese manufacturers. I think that was his best argument.

Look, I'm not a fan of flag burning, or most of the people who might engage in it. But banning any form of protest which doesn't cause financial or physical harm to the guy who sat next to you on the bus this morning smells a little Eau du Kim Jong Il to me. With a couple of seconds of research, I found that the other countries which have banned flag burning include Cuba, China, and Iran. Well hell, why didn't you say so? That's a club we want to be members of, alright.

(Interestingly, it is illegal to burn the flags of foreign nations in Denmark, but perfectly legal to burn the Danish flag there.)

The last time I checked, the flag is a symbol of what we stand for as a nation. Which, I'm told, has something to do with freedom and liberty and apple-filled pastries. It would seem pretty ironic to bind up that symbol of freedom in a restriction of our liberty.

Hey, I joined the Army and served five years of quasi-discomfort in an air conditioned room in middle Georgia so that you could burn whatever piece of cloth you wanted in protest of the latest White House fashion faux pas that caught your fancy.

Which makes me wonder - what do they do with all those little flags they set out in cemeteries every year? If they throw them away, wouldn't that be desecration? Or what about those little flags on top of the toothpicks used to hold my hamburger bun down at Shoney's Big Boy restaurants - if I dropped it in the pickle juice, would I be subject to arrest?

Please, dear Congress, go back to trying to figure out a way to reduce the deficit, or salvage social security or something useful and quit trying to put a crimp in liberty, 'kay?