Working around absurdity: the flag burning amendment

This site has some tongue-in-cheek and yet entirely workable instructions on how to burn a flag without running afoul of the law: Whatever: Cracking the Flag-Burning Amendment
For example, one “flag” is a US flag but with a dot for one of the stars (pictured).

This is fascinating to me because it gets to the heart of what symbols are, and how silly it is to legislate and censor speech in the first place.
Also, Jon Stewart on the Daily Show last week pointed out how ironically the official “rules” for handling flags say that you should burn one when it’s worn out.
Anyway, this is a great object lesson in fundamentalism: namely that there are people who actually believe they can make a rule that says “you cannot burn or deface an American Flag” and have some sense of certainty that those things (“burn” “deface” ” American” “Flag”) are specific, hard-edged concepts without ambiguity or room for interpretation. Just like with scripture or the Constitution or anything else, there is always room for interpretation and context.

Author: Andrew Hinton

I use information to architect better places for humans. More at