Thursday, June 14, 2018

Happy Flag Day

Gerard N. Magliocca

Today marks the 75th anniversary of the Supreme Court's opinion in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, which remains Justice Robert H. Jackson's rhetorical masterpiece:

Struggles to coerce uniformity of sentiment in support of some end thought essential to their time and country have been waged by many good as well as by evil men. Nationalism is a relatively recent phenomenon but at other times and places the ends have been racial or territorial security, support of a dynasty or regime, and particular plans for saving souls. As first and moderate methods to attain unity have failed, those bent on its accomplishment must resort to an ever-increasing severity. As governmental pressure toward unity becomes greater, so strife becomes more bitter as to whose unity it shall be. Probably no deeper division of our people could proceed from any provocation than from finding it necessary to choose what doctrine and whose program public educational officials shall compel youth to unite in embracing. Ultimate futility of such attempts to compel coherence is the lesson of every such effort from the Roman drive to stamp out Christianity as a disturber of its pagan unity, the Inquisition, as a means to religious and dynastic unity, the Siberian exiles as a means to Russian unity, down to the fast failing efforts of our present totalitarian enemies. Those who begin coercive elimination of dissent soon find themselves exterminating dissenters. Compulsory unification of opinion achieves only the unanimity of the graveyard.


A wise man said that a man can stand on principle by taking a knee.

I think the Korematsu dissent is much better, because the stakes were so much higher.

Two quotes come to mind:

Justice Holmes: "It is not enough for the knight of romance that you agree that his lady is a very nice girl—if you do not admit that she is the best that God ever made or will make, you must fight."

Edmund Burke: "To make us love our country, our country ought to be lovely."

In a litany of un-presidential things our current one has done, his crass and simplistic insertion into the NFL protests debate to demand the firing of individuals is near the top for me.

Speaking of "un-presidential things," I understand that Mike Myers has skeptically raised an eyebrow at the Singapore Summit photo of Trump with his "mini-me" as a potential trademark violation.

Here's a saying attributed to Trump's bases of the Forgotten and Revengelicals: "My country white AND wrong!"

The actual mini-me died earlier this year.

One other thing that can be noted is that the Supreme Court changed their mind in the flag salute case, particularly three members. Then Justice Stone, a Coolidge appointee of the Souter mode, solo dissented in the original case. He dealt with conscientious objectors during WWI, so the issue was personal to him.

"The guaranties of civil liberty are but guaranties of freedom of the human mind and spirit and of reasonable freedom and opportunity to express them. They presuppose the right of the individual to hold such opinions as he will and to give them reasonably free expression, and his freedom, and that of the state as well, to teach and persuade others by the communication of ideas. The very essence of the liberty which they guaranty is the freedom of the individual from compulsion as to what he shall think and what he shall say, at least where the compulsion is to bear false witness to his religion. If these guaranties are to have any meaning they must, I think, be deemed to withhold from the state any authority to compel belief or the expression of it where that expression violates religious convictions, whatever may be the legislative view of the desirability of such compulsion."

Just a general comment: I hate putting a lot of work into a comment, only to find when I hit "post" that 'moderation' has kicked in while I was working on it.

If "moderation" meant actual moderation, rather than the comments being closed, I suppose it would be less annoying.

Good thing those school kids didn't play for the NFL.

This comment has been removed by the author.

Moderation kicks in after 48 hours. Go by the time stamp of the article.


Here's a quote from President Trump to compare with Justice Jackson's quote in Gerard's post reported at TPM today:

“Hey, he is the head of a country and I mean he is the strong head,” Trump said of Kim to Fox News’ Steve Doocy on Friday. “Don’t let anyone think anything different. He speaks and his people sit up at attention. I want my people to do the same.”

And here's a saying from the past that Trump abided by: "Charity begins at home." with his Charitable Foundation, violating both federal and New York state laws. Here's a little history on the sources of that old saying at:

Here's a source that I found most interesting:

“Charity begins at home, and justice begins next door.” – Charles Dickens, 1844

Perhaps Brett will confirm that Trump's wish:

"I want my people to do the same.”

has been and will continue that same by Trump's "people," Trump's bases of the Forgotten and the Revengelicals.

Another reaction (from Twitter) to his opinion ...

"High official prescribes a constitutional orthodoxy that is recited, enforced and celebrated as a creed by succeeding generations of lawyers."

BTW, in a movie involving Nuremberg, Alec Baldwin portrayed Jackson.

George HW Bush ran his whole 1988 campaign on the flag salute. Unfortunately this is a classic example of the old adage about referenda on the Bill of Rights.

Trump was born on Flag Day 72 years ago. Trump's base of the Forgotten and the Revengelicals can point to that to account for Trump's fervor for the flag in his NFL tirades. But this would ignore Trump's reliance as a young man (with great athletic achievements) during the Vietnam War on spurious bone spurs for draft deferments, avoiding serving what the flag represented in that conflict. Trump's base of the Forgotten and the Revengelicals promo "Nobel, Nobel, Nobel" for the Trump/Kim Jong un summit in Singapore in support of Trump's claim of "Mission Accomplished." Perhaps Hollywood may do a sequel of "The Road to Singapore" commemorating these two new buds.

Or it could result in a sort of remake of the Cold War comedy "The Mouse That Roared" with the title "The Narcissists That Roared." The Trump quote in my 1:35 PM comment"

“Hey, he is the head of a country and I mean he is the strong head,” Trump said of Kim to Fox News’ Steve Doocy on Friday. “Don’t let anyone think anything different. He speaks and his people sit up at attention. I want my people to do the same.”

would provide the theme/plot. Could Moscow be Trump's next stop on his "Road" trips?


Probably no deeper division of our people could proceed from any provocation than from finding it necessary to choose what doctrine and whose program public educational officials shall compel youth to unite in embracing.

Isn’t that the purpose of the public schools?

Is SPAM suggesting, as a libertarian, that public schools interfere with his liberty? Wash SPAM "home schooled"? Or perhaps in his course of shooting blanks he is being improperly taxed?

This comment has been removed by the author.


Are you denying that public school officials choose the doctrines and programs taught to the children compelled by law to attend?

Jackson correctly predicted this coercive system would lead to deep divisions of our people, iincluding over the pledge, exercise of religion, sexual morals, the history of our nation, and so forth.


Of course libertarians, as well as others, may choose private schools (religious and otherwise), charter schools or home schooling. But SPAM personally as l libertarian does not directly have to make that decision. As such, SPAM may claim that his liberty is being infringed to the extent that he pays federal, state or local taxes that support public education. SPAM's libertarianism mantra is selfishness uber selflessness.

Of course public education is not perfect, nor are other forms of schooling. But public education generally has worked well, but not for all, in particular as a result of Jim Crow, Plessy v. Ferguson, with segregation until the tide stared to shift with Brown v. Bd. of Educ. (Unanimous, 1954) fought tooth and nail in the former slave states, with the battle revived by the Trump Administration.

As to SPAM on Jackson's "prediction," keep in mind that Jackson's part of the "unanimous" in Brown 11 years later. But perhaps SPAM is suggesting that in 1943 public schools, though "coercive," functioned okay, much better than since that time?

SPAM's prime objection to public education is that it came about because of progressives, pushing concepts offered by Thomas Jefferson early on that had been ignored.

Was SPAM home schooled? If so, one can understand why SPAM is so misinformed. That may also explain why SPAM is of the view that The Gilded Age of the late 19th certurny were America's best days, before progressives pushed for public schools. Or maybe SPAM as a patriot disagrees with Barnette?

A few cases involved burning the flag. A lesser known one is Street v. NY:

According to evidence given at trial, the events which led to the conviction were these. Appellant testified that, during the afternoon of June 6, 1966, he was listening to the radio in his Brooklyn apartment. He heard a news report that civil rights leader James Meredith had been shot by a sniper in Mississippi. Saying to himself, "They didn't protect him," appellant, himself a Negro, took from his drawer a neatly folded, 48-star American flag which he formerly had displayed on national holidays. Appellant left his apartment and carried the still-folded flag to the nearby intersection of St. James Place and Lafayette Avenue. Appellant stood on the northeast corner of the intersection, lit the flag with a match, and dropped the flag on the pavement when it began to burn.

One account suggests the "neatly folded" part is the proper handling of the flag. Also, the official rules include the way to dispose of a worn flag: “the flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.”

One might argue that when it is assumed killing civil rights leaders is the patriotic thing to do, the flag might be in bad condition, symbolically speaking. Anyway, Mr. Street in a 5-4 decision written by Justice Harlan* got off because it was deemed that words he used could have tainted the prosecution.


* He later argued that banning flags in the shape of penises was a 1A problem though the case was ultimately decided 4-4.


Publicly funded education is actually an archetypical public good.

Once again, the problem is coerced government indoctrination.

The solution would be eliminating commpn cores and allow the parents to shop for schools like they do universities.

So SPAM does accept public schools as a public good. We recently had discussions on what constitutes a public good. But then SPAM says:

"Once again, the problem is coerced government indoctrination."

SPAM didn't make that clear with his initial 9:57 AM comment on a portion of the Jackson quote.

I questioned SPAM on his question and that led to SPAM's 10:36 AM comment that prompted my 11:34 AM comment and then his 1:58 PM response with a response that included the quote above. Libertarians use the word "coercion" and "coerced" loosely, attempting to challenge what they don't like. Public education is generally tasked to the states as part of federalism. The central government's role is quite limited. In states local communities address public school requirements, subject to some state oversight. The central government provides some assistance. Not all public school systems work well, which is a shame. The state of Texas engages in a form of coercion on book publishing firms providing school books that can impact other states, as the publishing firms seek some sort of uniformity in school texts they publish. Texas officials have engaged in revisionist history requirements in its school texts, often on subjects relative to civil rights. Perhaps school segregation under Jim Crow and Plessy for many decades coerced white students in being denied the benefits of diversity as segregation was forced upon them by the government in cooperation with their parents, although over time the parents may have doctrinated their children regarding the benefits of white supremacy.

So perhaps SPAM could identify his perception of coerced government indoctrination currently. As to parents shopping for universities, they can shop for non-state colleges and universities that are de facto segregated. But the public good we are discussing is public education as it has developed since Brown v. Bd. of Educ. (Unanimous, 1954).

As to common cores, federalism comes into play in their adoptions. If states and their local communities accept such, what's wrong with that democratic process?

[By the time I post this comment, there may be intervening comments. I'm sure Mr. W has some thoughts on this.]


Here's a link to a post at Daily Kos:

on a North Carolina effort via charter schools to permit certain white communities to provide segregated schools. The post demonstrates how certain former slave states have problems with Brown.


هل تبحث عن شركة متخصصة فى خدمات التنظيف بالطائف بافضل المعدات والسوائل وثقة تمة فى العمل ودقة فى النتائج كل هذه المميزت توفرها شركة الخليج الشركة الافضل والامثل فى الخدمات المنزلية بالطائف وبما اننا الشركة الافضل والامثل بدون منافس سوف نسعى لتوفر افضل الخدمات باقل تكلفة وبقدر كبير من الاهتمام والدقة عزيزى اينما كنت فى اى منطقة ا وحى تابع لمدينة الطائف اتصل بنا وسوف نصلك فى الحال شركة الخليج للخدمات المنزلية شركة تنظيف منازل بالطائف
شركة تنظيف فلل بالطائف
شركة تنظيف خزانات بالطائف
شركة تسليك مجارى بالطائف
شركة رش مبيدات بالطائف
شركة مكافحة نمل ابيض بالطائف
شركة مكافحة حشرات بالطائف
شركة عزل اسطح بالطائف
شركة عزل خزانات بالطائف


لشركة تمتلك خبرة كبيرة ومعرفة تامة بكافة الحشرات التي تعيش بمدينة الرياض ونمتلك كافة المبيدات اللازمة للقضاء عليها ونحن بقسم شركة رش مبيدات بالرياض نهتم باقتناء احدث المبيدات المستعملة على الصعيد العالمي حيث نضمن باستيرادها افضل جودة لخدمتنا ونشكل جلسات عمل علي يد مختصين للتوعية واعطاء التعليمات الخاصة باستخدام المبيدات كل نوع منها على حدا لانها تمتاز بتنوع كبير وطرق استخدام مختلفة ونتائج ايضآ مختلفة.
شركة رش مبيدات بالرياض
شركة مكافحة حشرات بالرياض
شركة مكافحة النمل الابيض بالرياض


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