Burning The American Flag Essay

696 words - 3 pages

Burning the American Flag

The American flag consists of thirteen horizontal stripes, with seven red stripes alternating among six white. In the upper left corner there is a rectangular blue space that contains fifty white stars. The thirteen stripes symbolize the thirteen original colonies of the United states of America and the stars represent the fifty states of the Union. White is said to symbolize purity and innocence. Red symbolizes strength and courage, and blue symbolizes vigilance, perseverance and justice. The flag in simple words is a piece of cloth that has meaning. The flag stands for everything in our country’s past.

The issue of burning the American flag, as a means of expression is continuously argued today. Many citizens view the flag as an icon, symbolizing all that the United States stands for. Some burn it in protest and others hang it on their walls. The American flag stands for freedom, liberty, and justice for all. Battles that have ensured our freedom have been fought over the star spangled banner. The flag stands for our victory in war as a nation over: the Southerners who wanted to keep slavery, the Axis who wanted to take over the world, and the Germans whose goal was the extermination of the Jews. Every time America has come out of war, the flag has stood strong.

In 1989 the United States Supreme Court ruled that burning the American flag was a form of symbolic speech and therefore was protected by the United States Constitution. What would happen if they took away the right of freedom of speech? How would people express their feelings and emotions towards the government? Many people would feel as though the government was attacking the basis of one of our nation's strongest beliefs. Many would argue over this situation. Protestors would raise all sorts of questions. What is a free nation that does not allow political disagreement? What is a free nation...

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