Burn a Flag, Get Extra Credit

A University of Maine student has dropped a course and filed a complaint because the professor offered extra credit for students who burned an American Flag or the US Constitution (a copy, of course). Rebekah McDade said she has a strong family background of military service and stated the Flag and Constitution are important symbols to her. She decided to drop the class and take it next semester with a different professor. The Professor, Paul Grosswiler, said that he never intended for students to actually burn anything and that hundreds of past students understood that this was designed to spark debate about free speech. This is like Al Sharpton threatening violence and then claiming he never actually meant for people to be violent when one of his supporters kills someone.


I would not have dropped the class because it would have been too much fun to harass this professor for the entire semester. Imagine how he would react to me referring to him as an idiot or as a liberal twit, all under the guise of free speech. Now I would never burn a Flag or the Constitution (though Congress figuratively burns the Constitution when it passes bills not authorized by the document) but I would participate in the extra credit exercise. I would get to class early and hang a noose up front. Then when the class and Grosswiler arrived and started the wheels of the hate crime machine turning I would say that the noose was mine and that I wanted my extra credit.

You see, Grosswiler has defended his position by claiming that refers to provocative examples to demonstrate the courage necessary to support free expression. He stated that “If they don’t tolerate thought that they hate, they don’t believe in the First Amendment.” I would be there to test the limits of how much he would tolerate. I might wear a swastika or Abortion is Murder shirt or perhaps one that reads “Their symbol is a Jackass, any questions?” just to see if he would be as accepting as he expects others to be.

A spokesman for the University said that Grosswiler’s classroom statements were not meant to be taken seriously and that no one would get extra credit for burning the items in question. So how much of the professor’s classroom comments are not to be taken seriously? Should they just ignore him or are they supposed to decipher when he is serious and when he is not?

All of this is pretty basic liberal double speak. The liberal professor gets taken to task for his words so he decides to say he never really meant it. That did not work for Imus nor has it worked for any conservative who has been accused of the wrong kind of free speech.

I just wonder why this professor felt it necessary to duck the issue. If he truly believes what he says why not exercise his free speech and say so?

Perhaps it is because he knows that words, protected or not, have consequences. Or maybe he lacks the spine to actually defend his position. In any event, this guy is what is wrong with the American educational system.

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2 Responses to “Burn a Flag, Get Extra Credit”

  1. Burn a Flag, Get Extra Credit…

    Burn a Flag, Get Extra Credit…

  2. Ray says:

    This makes me sick, what next , cripple an american get a whole year’s credit.
    I don’t know if it’s better than the 72 virgins but it’s a subtle way to brainwash our impressionable young people into thinking that being despicable to your country , is honorable, what a way to go.
    And this is what we pay our educators for, friends like this, “Who needs enemies?”