Donald Trump has come under fire from liberals after he took to Twitter on Tuesday morning and called for the criminalization of burning the American flag.
Trump tweeted that there should be “consequences” for the burning of the flag — including a year in jail or a loss of citizenship — which is seen by many as an act of desecration.
President-elect Trump came under immediate fire for his comments with far left media outlet Mother Jones calling it “a terrifying sign of how he may crack down on dissent during his administration, even if it means trampling the Constitution in the process.”
Trump’s transition communications director Jason Miller made an appearance on CNN on Tuesday morning and was lectured by Chris Cuomo.
“These things matter Jason, they just do. When things are vetted by the Supreme Court and it’s seen as constitutional, you gotta respect that. You just have to respect that,” he said.
There have been multiple Supreme Court rulings which state flag burning is a protected form of speech under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. In a 5-to-4 decision, the Supreme Court struck down a Texas law in 1989 which criminalized flag burning, with even the late Justice Antonin Scalia arguing the practice was protected under the First Amendment.
The push to criminalize burning of the American flag has been a regularly heated topic of debate, despite the Supreme Court’s pronouncements on the issue.
In 2005, Hillary Clinton and then-Sen. Bob Bennett, R-Utah co-sponsored the Flag Protection Act and although it didn’t call for the stripping of citizenship, it would’ve made burning the American flag punishable by a year in jail and a fine of not more than $100,000.
The bipartisan bill was being proposed as a compromise for an amendment that would have banned burning the American flag. It never made it out of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
A New York Times piece accused then Senator Hillary Clinton of being “in pander mode.”
“It’s hard to see this as anything but pandering — there certainly isn’t any urgent need to resolve the issue. Flag-burning hasn’t been in fashion since college students used slide rules in math class and went to pay phones at the student union to call their friends,” the paper claimed.
The Tampa Bay Times, meanwhile, called Clinton’s move a “pathetic ploy” and “political pandering of the worst kind.”
H/T: Fox News