George Mason Law Review Civil Rights Law Journal



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First Amendment grounds who had been convicted under a Washington statute which prohibited the exhibition of a United States flag which had attached to it symbols or other extraneous material. The defendant's conduct in Parcell had consisted of hanging a United States flag, to which was attached a peace symbol, outside the window of his apartment. The Parcell Court concluded that a finding that defendant had engaged in a form of communication was "inevitable." Id. at 409, 94 S. Ct. at 2729. The Court in Parcell noted that defendant's activity had coincided with and been triggered by this country's incursion into Cambodia and the Kent State tragedy, and that "in the surrounding circumstances the likelihood was great that (defendant's) message would be understood by those who viewed it." Id. at 411, 94 S. Ct. at 2729. (emphasis added).In the instant case, as noted, there has been no showing that the normal observer would regard the process of tattooing as communicative in nature, and the Court cannot infer that observers would regard it as such. While this factor is not necessarily dispositive, it is nevertheless an "important" factor, and militates against the conclusion that tattooing is protected by the


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