On the flag-burning amendment to the Constitution:

1. It trivializes the Constitution.2. The flag burners are trying to get your goat. If you haven't the maturity to deal with it, they have manipulated you.

3. "Flagotry" is a handle for the manipulation of masses of people by politicians, military people and others, a way for getting a crowd into an emotional state that help them to manipulate people to their own purposes.

4. There is no reason or logic to protecting and adoring the flag; it's wholly arbitrary symbolism that tends to put you under the control of those who control the symbolism.

5. The protect-the-flag excitement is purely emotional; it lacks the wisdom and cool judgment that ought to characterize lawmaking.

6. Who knows what else can be justified by a liberal Supreme Court under a protect-the-flag amendment?

7. It makes more sense to pledge allegiance to the United States of America than to its flag.

The above are a series of intellectual reasons I worked out trying to justify my gut feeling against protecting the flag against desecration. I think I know now why I am intuitively against it. I grew up in the 1930s when the Germans, Italians and Japanese were dominated by a patriotic fervor that allowed their military to gain control over the people to the extent that they could lead their nations into aggressive warfare. I saw firsthand the heavy hand of our own military and government playing on patriotism during World War II.

The shameful internment of the Japanese Americans was but one of the evils of that day. I have seen misguided patriotism since, as in Joe McCarthy's doings. This protect-the-flag movement looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, and this particular duck is greater control of the populace by the powers that be.

Volney Wallace

Murray