HOUSE JOINT MEMORIAL 4009
State of Washington 52nd Legislature 1991 Regular Session
By Representatives D. Sommers, Basich, Chandler, Orr, Neher, Brumsickle, Morton, Broback, Nealey, Tate, Moyer, Hochstatter, Betrozoff, P. Johnson, Casada, Padden, Zellinsky, Dorn, Paris, Bowman and Ballard.
Read first time February 13, 1991. Referred to Committee on State Government.
TO THE HONORABLE GEORGE BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, AND TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE AND THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, AND TO THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE UNITED STATES, IN CONGRESS ASSEMBLED:
We, your Memorialists, the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Washington, in legislative session assembled, respectfully represent and petition as follows:
WHEREAS, Although the right of free speech is part of the foundation of the United States Constitution, no right is absolute and certain limits on expression have long been recognized as lawful and legitimate means of maintaining public safety and decency, as well as the orderliness and productive value of public debate; and
WHEREAS, Certain actions, although arguably related to one person's free expression, nevertheless raise issues concerning public decency, public peace, and the rights of expression and sacred values of others; and
WHEREAS, There are symbols of our national soul such as the Washington Monument, the United States Capitol Building, the White House, and memorials to our greatest leaders, such as Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln, which are the property of every American and are therefore worthy of protection from desecration and dishonor; and
WHEREAS, The Flag of the United States was most nobly born in the struggle for independence that began on a bridge in Concord, Massachusetts and came to symbolize the stands of a young and brave nation against the mighty world powers of that day, and its courageous resilience inspired our national anthem; and
WHEREAS, In the Second World War the Flag of the United States was the banner that led the American battle against fascist imperialism from the depth of Pearl Harbor to the mountaintop on Iwo Jima, and to victory against Hitler's Nazi war machine; and
WHEREAS, The Flag of the United States symbolizes the principles, values, and ideals for which good and decent people have fought for, often at the expense of their lives or at the cost of cruel condemnation upon their return home; and
WHEREAS, The Flag of the United States was carried to the moon by our astronauts as a banner of goodwill, vision, and triumph on behalf of all mankind; and
WHEREAS, The Flag of the United States to this day is a most honorable and worthy banner of a nation which is thankful for its strengths and committed to curing its faults, and remains the hope of millions of immigrants attracted by the universal power of the American ideal; and
WHEREAS, The law as interpreted by the United States Supreme Court can no longer accord to the "Stars and Stripes" that reverence, respect, and dignity befitting the banner of that most noble experiment of a nation-state; and
WHEREAS, It is only fitting that people everywhere should lend their voices to a forceful call for restoration of the "Stars and Stripes" to a proper station under law and decency.
NOW, THEREFORE, Your Memorialists respectively petition the Congress of the United States to propose an amendment of the United States Constitution, for ratification by the states, specifying that Congress and the states shall have the power to prohibit the physical desecration of the Flag of the United States.
BE IT RESOLVED, That copies of this Memorial be immediately transmitted to the Honorable George Bush, President of the United States, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and to each member of Congress from the State of Washington.