Yale Flag Burning Incites Debate
Three students ignite American flag, bloggers criticize media for coverage.
Early Tuesday (April 3) morning, three Yale students were arrested for igniting an American flag hanging from the front porch of a New Haven, Conn. home. The perpetrators, identified as Nikolaos Angelopoulos, a 19-year-old Greek citizen, Farhad Anklesaria, a 19-year-old British citizen, and Said Hyder Akbar, a 23-year-old Pakistani-born American citizen who previously acted as a translator for American forces, were seen by local police roaming city streets around 3 A.M., at which point the trio asked for directions to their residence. Next, police noticed a flag aflame at nearby home, a potentially deadly act of arson. In response, the students were located, held without bail, and slapped with charges ranging from reckless endangerment to arson. Soon after, the students admitted to the crime.
Meanwhile, hordes of news stories are exploding across the Internet, many citing the arrests as a direct result of the flag burning itself — a legal act under the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1989 ruling. But bloggers are firing back, scolding the students and blowing the whistle on an irresponsible media, but a few are lionizing the trio for protesting the American government, no matter the means.
Here’s what bloggers are saying about the Yale students’ flag burning:
“That’s sick. Especially that it was a flag that belonged to someone else who is a proud American. Regardless if you agree with the decisions that our government has made, burning the flag is just disrespectful and if they hate this country so much, I wonder what they are doing here.” — Cubanakimm, plantgirl26.multiply.com
“Amen! Seems like a freedom of speech issue…wonder if the ACLU will get involved?” — Andrewmackris, drudge.com
“They burned an American flag: Not a big deal to me.” — Revdarko, drudge.com
“Fucking assholes. Come to our country, get the best education available anywhere in the world, and then burn our flag. I hope Yale expels you, and then our government revokes your student visas and throws your ass out.” — Robbie, urbangrounds.com
“Once again [the media] failed to highlight the whole story. The three students were not arrested for their political opinions.” — Syntipas, syntipas.blogspot.com
“The press is telling the story they want to tell, rather than the actual story.” — Rob, blog.myspace.com
Talk: What do think the proper disciplinary action for the three flag burners is?