Trump suggests jailing flag burners, defying constitutional protections

McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee, was asked by CNN's Manu Raju about Trump's tweet about flag burning. However, we have a First Amendment, which says that the right of free speech shall not be abridged.

More than 200 people voted in the poll, with 55.3 percent supporting Trump and 44.7 percent opposing the president.

"In addition to ignoring the Supreme Court's clear teaching that flag burning is constitutionally protected speech, Mr. Trump's tweet also casually suggests that citizens should lose their citizenship as a "penalty" for such acts", explained Vladeck.

Asked if the president, who has spoken to Trump by phone a few times since the election, was concerned about such views, Earnest replied: "This is not the first thing that the president-elect has said or tweeted that President Obama disagrees with".

While flag burning may be protected under the First Amendment, most don't like to see it.

Trump offered his thoughts in an early-morning post on Twitter, saying, "Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag".

It's not known what prompted Trump to send the tweet, which came just after another message in which he blasted cable network CNN.

Burning the American flag, which is considered "symbolic speech", is technically protected under the First Amendment. "If someone wanted to show their First Amendment right I'd be afraid for their own safety", he said.

"To stand there and burn a flag that has given us so much freedom is a disgrace", said Eric Smith.

The woman who posted the video, Sunsara Taylor, shouted over a megaphone that the USA flag "deserves to be burned".

"It's completely ridiculous, and I don't think there's a big universe of people out there who support flag burning, and it's bad and despicable", Miller responded.

But in 1989, Scalia signed onto an opinion written by the liberal Justice William Brennan that struck down a criminal conviction under Texas law for burning a flag during a political protest. That doesn't mean the 78-year-old justice likes flag desecration, but it's the justices' job to interpret the Constitution, not to pass moral judgment, Scalia has said repeatedly.

"The Constitution protects all Americans, even those who act like they hold it in contempt", Boutrous said.

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