|Jun. 28th, 2005 12:33 pm (Not Quite) current event responses|
I've been away -- or more correctly way to busy -- for a while. Perhaps, I'll get around to actually letting people know what I've been up to in a bit. But first, some commentary:
Reactions to the Eminent Domain Decision
I, personally, am disappointed in the Supreme Court's recent decision involving Eminent Domain powers(Kelo et. al. v. City of New London et. al.), but it didn't take me by surprise. What has surprised me is the reaction a number of people are having to how the court voted. The breakdown of the vote, at least in general, didn't surprise me one bit.
In fact, I remember telling myself the morning before the decision was handed down, that the decision would be split by one vote -- i.e. a 5-4 decision -- and that most of the conservative members would vote against taking property in these cases, and that most of the liberal members would vote for taking property. However, it seems that a number of other people I've read -- in Live Journal and on rec.arts.sf.fandom -- were shocked that it was the conservatives who were in support of personal property, and the liberals who favored taking property "for the good of the community."
Flag burning Amendment
Once again, the House of Representatives has voted to submit to the several states an amendment to the Constitution that would allow congress to pass laws making it illegal to burn the American Flag.
To me this seems like we are trying to protect a Symbol of the United States, by tramping on one of the things that makes the United States, and its symbols, worth admiring. Further, I'm at least 90% sure that "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech" was intended largely, if not mostly, to protect political speech. Protesting the actions of a government, even by burning a primary symbol for the country led by that government, is clearly political speech.
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I've considered writing to my Senators asking them to oppose this amendment, but I'm not sure how useful that would be. From what I've seen, both would already oppose such an amendment either on its own merits (or lack thereof) or simply because it is supported by many conservative Republicans.