What is desecration?
In 1989 the Congress agreed on wording to define desecration, and they drew directly from the definition in Black's Law Dictionary, a common legal reference for the past century. Congress defined desecration as to "knowingly mutilate, deface, physically defile, burn, maintain on the floor or ground, or trample upon the flag of the United States." It provided an exception for disposal of worn flags. The key is that no one can unintentionally desecrate the flag. The word itself means that the actor intends to cast contempt on the object in question. The amendment we are proposing further limits desecration by making it more than casting contempt, but inclusive of a physical act. For the 100 years that flag-protection laws were on the books prior to the Supreme Court's 1989 decision, no court or state had a problem defining desecration.