Call to ban flag-burning

The Sydney Morning Herald, 5 November 2002, p.3.

 

The Federal Government should consider making it a crime to burn the Australian flag, the Deputy Prime Minister, John Anderson, said yesterday.

A protest at Melbourne University last week during which the Australian and US flags were burned was an insult to Australian soldiers serving overseas and to those who had died for the country, he said, promising to take the matter up within the Government when parliament resumes next week.

But while Mr Anderson said a ban would not be an attack on free speech, he may not find it easy to rally support. Politicians generally condemn flag-burning, but in the past have baulked at outlawing it.