Monday, June 27, 2005

A burning issue - the last word 

Further to my previous two posts about the flag desecration amendment, Mark Steyn weighs in against the bill with essentially two arguments - one Hayekian: freedom of speech guarantees that all important information is widely available to everyone and the marketplace of ideas can function to its full potential:
For my own part, I believe that, if someone wishes to burn a flag, he should be free to do so. In the same way, if Democrat senators want to make speeches comparing the U.S. military to Nazis and the Khmer Rouge, they should be free to do so. It's always useful to know what people really believe...
And the other - if we're to stay with the Austrians - Schwarzeneggerian:
A flag has to be worth torching. When a flag gets burned, that's not a sign of its weakness but of its strength. If you can't stand the heat of your burning flag, get out of the superpower business. It's the left that believes the state can regulate everyone into thought-compliance. The right should understand that the battle of ideas is won out in the open.
In other words: don't be a girlie-man - you're big enough to cope with idiots yourself and you don't need the government to hold your hand on this one.


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