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Article posted May 21 2014, 6:15 PM Category: Tyranny/Police State Source: Police State USA Print

Pennsylvania Man Arrested for Hanging Flag Upside Down

A clash between property rights and the patriotism police leaves one man facing charges.

ALLEGHENY TOWNSHIP, PA — Police arrested and charged a man with a crime because he hung an American flag upside down on his own property.

Joshuaa Brubaker, of Duncansville, says he is passionate about his Native American heritage and the American Indian Movement (AIM).   He grew upset when the site of one of the most infamous massacres in U.S. history has been put up for commercial sale.

“I found that Wounded Knee is up for sale, not only privately but commercially,” Brubaker said to WJACTV.  He made his displeasure known by flipping over his American flag and painting “AIM” on it.

In 1890, during the height of the American Indian "relocation" effort, U.S. troops disarmed the Lakota people en masse "for their own safety and protection" as they were corralled into their new home.  When a deaf Lakota man refused to surrender his rifle to the federal soldiers, most of the tribe was slaughtered. The event is known as the Wounded Knee Massacre, and is still memorialized today.

Brubaker’s protest was peaceful and did not infringe on the property rights of anyone else. However, the same could not be said about those who reacted to his protest — offended that he was not waving his flag in a manner deemed proper by the state.

The Allegheny Township Police Department intruded on Brubaker’s property and forcibly took down the flag. Mr. Brubaker was charged with ‘defiling’ an American flag.

Allegheny Township Assistant Police Chief L.J. Berg said justified the arrest because he and others were offended.  “People have made too many sacrifices to protect the flag and to leave this happen in my community,” said Berg.  “I'm not happy with that."

Pennsylvania’s flag desecration statutes are here and here:
A person is guilty of a misdemeanor ... if, in any manner, he:

(1) for exhibition or display places any marks, writing or design of any nature ... upon any flag;

(2) exposes to public view any such marked or defiled flag; ...

A person is guilty of a misdemeanor ... if he maliciously takes down, defiles, injures, removes or in any manner damages, insults, or destroys any American flag or the flag of the Commonwealth which is displayed anywhere.
“It’s just not right and simply because I express myself in a way that somebody else doesn’t like or agree with doesn’t mean I should be persecuted for having beliefs,” said Brubaker.

He added:  “If I don’t have a right to fly that flag upside down, which means a sign of distress, which this country is in so much distress right now, then what’s the point of having it?”

Fortunately, the Supreme Court has laid precedent against these types of prohibitions.  See Texas v. Johnson (1989) and United States v. Eichman (1990).

Unfortunately, Americans seem to have lost all concept of the freedoms which the flag was supposed to represent; including the right to private property and the right to peaceful expression.

If ardent flag-wavers spent half as much effort protecting our rights as they do enforcing mandatory veneration for the flag, the freedoms which we sing songs about might actually still exist.

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Comments 1 - 7 of 7 Add Comment Page 1 of 1

Posted: May 21 2014, 6:27 PM

6645 This weekend I will be wearing a Rage Against The Machine T-shirt that features an upside-down flag.

Posted: May 22 2014, 12:47 AM

68255 No need even in Supreme Court ruling. The same statute says 2 paragraphs down:

Exception.--Subsection (a) of this section does not
(4) To any patriotic or political demonstration or

From reading that paragraph it's obvious that it criminalizes using flag for commercial advertising.

Posted: May 22 2014, 3:19 AM

91102 Its the worst kind of tripe and fascism to say "people died for that flag". A flag is a SYMBOL folks, nobody (sane) died or fought for a piece of dyed cloth. It's a kind of insanity really. If someone believes they fought for their country, that is something different, and real.

They confuse the map with the actual area the map only describes.

Native Americans especially (but really all) have a right to free speech and as NATIVE americans especially that have been decimated by what that flag represents, it seems even worse.

Also 68255, GREAT catch.

Posted: May 22 2014, 6:52 PM

6645 91102: It's like the pledge of allegiance. "I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States Of America, and to the republic for which it stands...". The use of the word "and" shows that you are literally pledging allegiance to a piece of cloth.

Posted: May 23 2014, 2:20 PM

5096 People too easily confuse symbols with what the symbols represent. It's a form of idol worship.
Emo, Victim 33610

Posted: May 23 2014, 3:59 PM

2469 Was in Grade One, 1965 when they marched us kids out to view Canadas new Flag. Down Came the Red Ensign that My Grampa Fought under at Vimy. Up went a Facsimile of a Blood-Soaked-Beach-Towel. Age Seven, and my very first taste of Things-that-make-one-go-Hmmmmmm.

Posted: May 25 2014, 7:17 AM

7478 after reading that fucktard police chiefs comment I'm inclined to use a flag to wipe my ass this morning... (if it represents the state as it exists today then that's all it's worth!)
Comments 1 - 7 of 7 Page 1 of 1

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