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> Burning EU & other flags banned in Germany
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Brett-Butler
post May 16 2020, 09:29 AM
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From the BBC:

QUOTE
Germany has made public burning of the EU flag or that of another country punishable by up to three years in jail, classing it as a hate crime.

The vote in the Bundestag (parliament) on Thursday makes defiling foreign flags equal to the crime of defiling the German flag.

The same applies for the EU anthem, Beethoven's Ode to Joy theme.

The move followed Social Democrat (SPD) complaints about protesters' burning of the Israeli flag in Berlin in 2017.

Justice Minister Christine Lambrecht, a member of the centre-left SPD, said "burning flags publicly has nothing to do with peaceful protests". She said it stoked up "hatred, anger and aggression", and hurt many people's feelings.


Whilst I can understand laws against banning the desecration of your own country's flag (even if I don't necessarily agree with it myself), making it illegal to burn other country's flags seems taking things a bit too far. And it seems quite odd that it's illegal to defile a song - does that mean if you sing "Ode To Joy" with parody lyrics, you could be found guilty and jailed? There's probably more to the law than in the new article, but even so it seems quite extreme.

Do you think that flag burning should be a criminal offense?
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Suedehead2
post May 16 2020, 02:20 PM
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QUOTE(Brett-Butler @ May 16 2020, 10:29 AM) *
From the BBC:
Whilst I can understand laws against banning the desecration of your own country's flag (even if I don't necessarily agree with it myself), making it illegal to burn other country's flags seems taking things a bit too far. And it seems quite odd that it's illegal to defile a song - does that mean if you sing "Ode To Joy" with parody lyrics, you could be found guilty and jailed? There's probably more to the law than in the new article, but even so it seems quite extreme.

Do you think that flag burning should be a criminal offense?

Not in the UK. An offence maybe, but not an offense tongue.gif
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Quarantilas
post May 16 2020, 03:43 PM
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Iím with the SPD on this. Itís a tactic of the extremists designed purely to stir up hate.
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T Boy
post May 16 2020, 04:05 PM
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Iím not sure itís too extreme. I mean you donít get casual flag burners that are going to get mixed up in this by accident, do you? Itís a form of expressing hate.
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Slitherhisser
post May 16 2020, 05:05 PM
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QUOTE(Brett-Butler @ May 16 2020, 10:29 AM) *
Do you think that flag burning should be a criminal offense?


No, I think making it a criminal offence is a bit extreme but there is a big issue around the burning of Israeli flags as mentioned in the opening post - is it political (anti - the current Israeli policy on Palestine) or is it racist (for example anti-Semitic) or both? I looked up the 2017 Berlin protest and there was apparently anti-Semitic language being used as well as Israeli flag burning so of course the flags being burned should be a criminal offence in this situation.

Having said that there are much better ways for people to politically protest than by burning flags.


This post has been edited by dandruff*: May 16 2020, 05:13 PM
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Andrew.
post May 17 2020, 03:26 PM
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If you want to make a point against the EU as an organisation and feel you have an actual valid reason then fine but you really don't need to burn a flag to do that. And chances are anyone rational wouldn't want to do that :') I don't get the song law though.
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Izzy
post May 17 2020, 04:34 PM
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Ahhh, there is a part of me that doesn't like it. There are often legitimate reasons to protest what a nation-state is doing. And while this focuses on the pretty useless act of burning flags which is hard to divorce from violence, adding other forms of it, like ripping the flag up, are treating it as a sacred object to dissuade criticism of the nation through its symbol.

Obviously AfD need to go do one, but they can use this, and they will, I have no doubt, as an example of how their free speech is being taken away by the overbearing state. It might be that this helps their support.
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mdh
post May 17 2020, 08:19 PM
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This law makes me feel uncomfortable... as if theyíre trying to limit peopleís freedom unnecessarily
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Quarantilas
post May 17 2020, 08:42 PM
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When I lived here in 2018 I saw literal actual Nazis walking down my street. Itís quite necessary in Germany. Anything that suppresses the far right here is a very good thing. They donít have the best track record.
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mdh
post May 17 2020, 08:57 PM
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QUOTE(Quarantilas @ May 17 2020, 09:42 PM) *
When I lived here in 2018 I saw literal actual Nazis walking down my street. Itís quite necessary in Germany. Anything that suppresses the far right here is a very good thing. They donít have the best track record.

Oh wow! Well there we go, quite sad that this is still the case.
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Quarantilas
post May 17 2020, 09:19 PM
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Havenít personally seen any so far since returning In dec but I understand theyíve been part of the anti-lockdown protests along with the conspiracy nuts and Anti-vaxxers. Which really says all you need to know about Anti-vaxxers!! One of the AfD lot went on a Bundestag video conference with the background showing Germanyís borders from the early 1900ís so yeah.

I will check further with my friends on what the born and bred Germans think of the rule change
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