Burning the Australia flag is a despicable act

Contributed article

Aboriginal protesters in Brisbane burned several Australia flags in public recently, which raises several issues.

First off, the burning of the national flag is a low, dirty, and despicable thing to do. It shows massive disrespect for our nation and for the men and women who fought under that flag in past wars.

However, whether the desecration of the national flag should be made illegal is another issue. Australia has had a long history of freedom of speech and freedom of expression, and we should avoid curtailing any of those freedoms as much as possible, no matter how disgusting the words or actions of some protestors may be.

On the other hand, there is the very real issue of whether anybody can burn things in the street anytime they want, whether they are involved in a protest or not. Can any Australian stop in any street or public place and burn things, or is it against the law? If anyone else would be arrested or fined for burning things in public spaces, then the same law should be applied to protestors too. Just because people are involved in a protest does not make them above the law.

Various protest groups will no doubt vigorously defend the right of Aboriginal protesters to burn the Australian flag, and that is part of democracy; of course, that being said, they then should also vigorously defend the right of other protesters to burn, for example, the Aboriginal flag, or the Islamic Koran. As the saying goes, “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander”. It will be interesting to see the reaction of Aboriginal extremists and politically correct fundamentalists to the public burnings of Aboriginal flags or Korans; will they defend the rights of those protestors?

Or is there one law for them and another for us?

References:
Indigenous protesters burn Australian flag”, Sky News, 16 November 2014
G20: Anger over burning of Australian flag ”, 7 News, 16 November 2014
G20 protesters burn Australian flag in rally on indigenous rights”, News.com.au, 16 November 2014
Prosecution ruled out as G20 activists burn Aussie flag”, The Australian, 17 November 2014

Comments

  1. Trend Prophet says

    Someone should burn an Aboriginal flag and find out.

  2. Burning of any enemies flag is one of the ultimate insults and declaration of ill intent to a country and people. People who burn the Australian flag are inciting racial hatred against Australians and declaring their ill intent to Australia and Australians.
    Insult to injury, most of them would probably be receiving Centrelink handouts. maybe burning of the flag should be linked to loss of privilege and welfare entitlements.

  3. The g Factor says

    One wonders what would be the reaction if white people burnt a flag in the street, especially the Aboriginal flag.

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