: Police in Norway have officially charged that comedian who burned an American flag on TV with a crime: insulting the flag of a foreign state.

As much as we may not like what he did, it’s still free speech.

  • Gary Utter

    But do they HAVE free speech in Norway?
    Free speech isn’t a god-given right, after all (despite what the Constituion says), it is granted (or not) by government.
    Meanwhile, I think this veneration of the flag is silly. (This despite the pair of flags flying from my porch for the past 20 years or so.) You want to burn the flag? Go ahead. Make sure you clean up your mess afterwards.

  • Soren Ryherd

    I’m with Gary. Go ahead, just don’t hurt anyone and clean up after.
    What astonishes me is that insulting the flag of a foreign state is a crime at all in Norway. Do I have to physically assault the foreign flag, or is flipping it the bird insulting enough to warrant being arrested?

  • Catherine

    It’s bad for the environment…

  • Brian

    A lot of European countries have what we would call fairly significant restrictions on free speech. One I am familiar with is the restriction on swastikas in Germany.
    Granted, the act of burning the flag is free speech here but Norway has different laws and freedoms.

  • Shalegrey

    Heh heh heh. Does anyone find it funny that while this one man on a “continent” so against us suffers legal reprecussions from burning our flag, people here are claiming to be censored and “intimidated” while their flag burning, tearing, and sundry other desecrations are all over the media?

  • Actually, Gary, free speech rights are not “granted” by the government. They are either recognized and not impeded, or they are denied on a sliding scale from “concerned” nanny-state government fiat to flat totalitarian clampdown. But the right to say what we want already belongs to each individual, whether the government of that individual’s country likes it or not.

  • Gary Utter

    I won’t say I disagree with you, but the only difference between our viewpoints is semantic, so I think it is not much of a disagreement. :)