23 un-American things you can totally do in America, no matter what Donald Trump says.

Just before 7 this morning, President-elect Donald Trump tweeted a call to jail or denaturalize anyone who burns the American flag.

As is the case with most things Trump, theories about, well ... why he tweeted this have run the gamut — from an attempt to distract from a report on son-in-law Jared Kushner's conflicts of interest to a devious plan to incite people to actually do it and use the backlash to consolidate his support to a typically impulsive response to something he saw on Fox News.

Regardless, it's a pretty stunning — and frightening — proposal. For a man who wants to make America great again, the tweet demonstrates a complete disregard for what makes America great in the first place: the First Amendment.


That amendment guarantees that each and every one of us can do any number of highly inadvisable, morally suspect, un-American things — short of yelling "fire" in a crowded theater — and the U.S. government can't do a damn thing about it. Sure, your fellow citizens can slide you a massive side-eye, argue with you, or condemn you, but you won't be arrested or have your passport taken away.

Indeed, thanks to the genius of the framers and the First Amendment, in America, you can...

1. Belt Toto's "Africa" at the top of your lungs while everyone else sings the pregame national anthem at Fenway Park.

Photo via iStock.

No matter how deeply punchable this would make you, you can't be arrested for singing the first verse-into-chorus of this classic '80s jam.

2. Photoshop a giant thumbs-down into a picture of Arches National Park.

Thumb photo via iStock. Background photo by Harvey Meston/Getty Images.

It's one of the most stunning vistas in the entire world. And thanks to James Madison, you are fully free to heckle it at your leisure.

3. Enjoy the song stylings of the North Korean girl group Moranbong.

Photo by Ed Jones/Getty Images.

The propaganda K-pop knockoff quintet shouldn't be your favorite band, but if they are, you are legally permitted to do you in that regard!

4. Tweet "Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag - if they do, there must be consequences - perhaps loss of citizenship or a year in jail!"

As ill-advised and constitutionally suspect as this is, it's within your rights to do so, even if you're soon to be the most powerful person in the country.

5. Dump a full bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken down a storm drain.

Photo via iStock.

This is an obviously terrible idea, both as a practical and symbolic gesture. But you can still do it. Because America.

6. Call Vladimir Putin on his personal cell to tell him he's a swell guy.

Photo by Alexey Druzhinin/Getty Images.

As long as you're not giving away state secrets, if you've got his number, you're good to chat with America's biggest frenemy!

7. Reply "Nah, I'm good" when offered a slice of apple pie.  

Photo via iStock.

Thanks, though!

8. Sneak up behind a bald eagle and yell "I know at least three blue jays that could kick your ass!"

Doesn't matter how skeptical the eagle is. Photo by Lewis Hulbert/Wikimedia Commons.

He's probably too much of a wimp to nip your eyes out anyway.

9. Protest soldiers' funerals while yelling homophobic slurs at their grieving relatives.

Photo by Mira Oberman/AFP/Getty Images.

This is perhaps the most morally odious thing you can possibly do. And yet, you're allowed to do it in America, which, believe it or not, is kind of fantastic.

10. Say "Soccer is better than football."

Photo by Gabriele Maltini/Getty Images.

Hell, you can even say "Soccer is football." No one can throw you out of here for that.

11. Refuse to accept American Express for purchases at your hardware store, deli, or pharmacy.

Photo by Clemson/Flickr.

Just because they have "American" in their name doesn't mean you have to roll over for their 3% surcharge.

12. Decide, for some reason, to be a Nazi.

Nazis protest the opening of a Holocaust museum in Illinois because that's pretty much their beat. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.

To be clear, you absolutely, 100% shouldn't be a Nazi. And if you are a Nazi, if you assault or murder any minorities, you're going to get nabbed by the feds and you will deserve it (hate speech and hate crimes are wildly different things, according to the law). But whether you're a full-on Nazi marching down Main Street to terrify Holocaust survivors in a Chicago bedroom community or a kind-of secret Nazi that dresses up and stuffs chicken parm sliders down your throat at a swanky conference in Washington, D.C., you're legally allowed to exist and shout out the terrible things you believe as the rest of us ignore you.

In America, you're allowed to be a Nazi.

13. Book a paid appearance on Russian state television.

Incoming National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images.

Not only can you cash in on that sweet geopolitical rivalry, you can still be a top national security official in the president's cabinet! Sweet!

14. Say "I'm moving to Canada" every time your preferred political party loses an election.

No, you're not going to, but go nuts saying it!

15. Post anti-immigration screeds on Facebook even though all four of your grandparents were immigrants.

It's hypocritical as all hell — and it is your right as a hypocritical American to go there. Thanks, freedom of speech!

16. Root for Ivan Drago in "Rocky IV."

GIF from "Rocky IV"/United Artists.

Snap!

17. Root for Team Iceland in "D2: The Mighty Ducks."

GIF from "D2: The Mighty Ducks"/Walt Disney Pictures.

Boom!

18. Root for the aliens in "Independence Day."

GIF from "Independence Day"/20th Century Fox.

Ka-blam!

19. Fly the Confederate flag.

Photo by Mark Hazlett/Getty Images.

It's the banner of actual traitors who killed hundreds of thousands of Americans in the name of enslaving millions of other Americans, and you can celebrate it as long and hard as you want here.

People will probably yell at you, as is their right, and that's also great. Super American 5000 all-around!

20. Tell anyone who will listen that paying taxes is B.S.

A Brooklyn woman meets with a tax preparer. Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images.

Sure, it's cool to have roads, bridges, schools, fire departments, a military, and health care, but you're still allowed to hate on the IRS with total impunity. You know, as long as you do pay your taxes.

21. Back your truck up over a copy of the "Hamilton" original cast recording.

"Hamilton" is, without question, the patriotic feel-good album of the year, revitalizing interest in America's founding while boasting such instant classics as "My Shot," "Satisfied," and "The Room Where it Happens." And you are perfectly covered if you choose to smash it to bits under your four-wheel drive.

22. Burn the American flag.

Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

Torching the Stars and Stripes is not particularly safe, nor is it generally an effective means of protest. Honestly, you should definitely think twice before burning the flag (unless you're a Boy Scout).

Still, you are fully, unequivocally, 100% within your rights as a citizen to light that baby up if you so choose. Which leads to...

23. You can totally call out a tweet from the president-elect of the United States for being ridiculously un-American.

Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images.

Just because a person is powerful doesn't mean they're above criticism.

Just because a president-elect floats an idea doesn't mean we have to accept or agree with it — liberal, conservative, or otherwise.

Just because the head of the executive branch of the U.S. government issues a statement doesn't mean it reflects the values we hold in common.

The president can say whatever he wants. Just like every other citizen.

In return, Americans can (and should!) remind him when things he says are wrong, dangerous, and — frankly — un-American.

This is America, after all.

More
Truth

Don't test on animals. That's something we can all agree on, right? No one likes to think of defenseless cats, dogs, hamsters, and birds being exposed to a bunch of things that could make them sick (and the animals aren't happy about it, either). It's no wonder so many people and organizations have fought to stop it. But did you ever think that maybe brands are testing products on us too, they're just not telling us they're doing it?

I know, I know, it sounds like a conspiracy theory, but that's exactly what e-cigarette brands like JUUL (which corners the e-cigarette market) are doing in this country right now, and young people are on the frontlines of the fallout. Most people assume that the government would have looked at devices that allow people to inhale unknown chemicals into their lungs BEFORE they hit the market. You would think that someone in the government would have determined that they are safe. But nope, that hasn't happened. And vape companies are fighting to delay the government's ability to evaluate these products.

So no one really knows the long-term health effects of e-cigarette use, not even JUUL's CEO, nor are they informing the public about the potential risks. On top of that, according to the FDA, there's been a 78% increase in e-cigarette usage among high school and middle school-aged children in just the last two years, prompting the U.S. Surgeon General to officially recognize the trend as an epidemic and urge action against it.

These facts have elicited others to take action, as well.

Truth Initiative, the nonprofit best known for dropping the real facts about smoking and vaping since 2000 through its truth campaign. We don't do PSAs. We also need to update so to explain truth – the nonprofit behind the truth youth smoking prevention campaign – you could also say this in a funny way – best known for sharing the facts about smoking and vaping or pull from some old campaigns. Just layer in a description of truth and who the campaign is., is now on a mission to confront e-cigarette brands like JUUL about the lack of care they've taken to inform consumers of the potential adverse side effects of their products. And they're doing it with the help of animal protesters who are tired of seeing humans treated like test subjects.

The March Against JUUL | Tested On Humans | truth www.youtube.com

"No one knows the long-term effects of JUULing so any human who uses one is being used as a lab rat," says, appropriately, Mario the Sewer Rat.

"I will never stop fighting JUUL. Or the mailman," notes Doug the Pug, the Instagram-famous dog star.

Truth, the national counter-marketing campaign for youth smoking prevention, hopes this fuzzy, squeaky, snorty animal movement arms humans with the facts about vaping and inspires them to demand transparency from JUUL and other e-cigarette companies. You can get your own fur babies involved too by sharing photos of them wearing protest gear with the hashtag #DontTestOnHumans. Here's some adorable inspo for you:

The dangerous stuff is already out there, but with knowledge on their side, young people will hopefully make the right choices and fight companies making the wrong ones. If you need more convincing, here are the serious facts.

Over the last decade, 127 e-cigarette-related seizures were reported, which prompted the FDA to launch an official investigation in April 2019. Since then, over 215 cases of a new, severe lung illness have sprung up all over the country, with six deaths to date. While scientists aren't yet sure of the root cause, the majority of victims were young adults who regularly vaped and used e-cigarettes. As such, the CDC has launched an official investigation into the potential link.

Sixteen-year-old Luka Kinard, a former frequent e-cigarette-user, is one of the many teens who experienced severe side effects. "Vaping was my biggest addiction," he told NowThis. "It lasted for about 15 months of my high school career." In 2018, Kinard was hospitalized after having a seizure. He also had severe nausea, chest pains, and difficulty breathing.

After the harrowing experience, he quit vaping, and began speaking out about his experience to help inform others and hopefully inspire them to quit and/or take action. "It shouldn't take having a seizure as a result of nicotine addiction like I had for teens to realize that these companies are taking advantage of what we don't know," Kinard said.

Teens are 16 times more likely to use e-cigarettes than adults, and four times more likely to take up traditional smoking as a result, according to truth, and yet the e-cigarette market remains virtually unregulated and untested. In fact, companies like JUUL continue to block and prevent FDA regulations, investing more than $1 million in lawyers and lobbying efforts in the last quarter alone.

Photo by Lindsay Fox/Pixabay

Consumers have a right to know what they're putting in their bodies. If everyone (and their pets) speaks up, the e-cigarette industry will have to make a change. Young people are already taking action across the country. They're hosting rallies nationwide and on October 9 as part of a National Day of Action, young people are urging their friends and classmates to "Ditch JUUL." Will you join them?

For help with quitting e-cigarettes, visit thetruth.com/quit or text DITCHJUUL to 88709 for free, anonymous resources.

truth
True
LUSH

Handmade cosmetics company Lush is putting its money where its mouth is and taking a bold step for climate change action.

On September 20 in the U.S. and September 27 in Canada, Lush will shut the doors of its 250 shops, e-commerce sites, manufacturing facilities, and headquarters for a day, in solidarity with the Global Climate Strike taking place around the world. Lush is encouraging its 5000+ employees "to join this critical movement and take a stand until global leaders are forced to face the climate crisis and enact change."

Keep Reading Show less
Planet
via Cadbury

Cadbury has removed the words from its Dairy Milk chocolate bars in the U.K. to draw attention to a serious issue, senior loneliness.

On September 4, Cadbury released the limited-edition candy bars in supermarkets and for every one sold, the candy giant will donate 30p (37 cents) to Age UK, an organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for the elderly.

Cadbury was prompted to help the organization after it was revealed that 225,000 elderly people in the UK often go an entire week without speaking to another person.

Keep Reading Show less
Well Being

The fine folks at Forbes are currently falling all over themselves trying to clean up the mess they created by publishing their 2019 list of 100 Most Innovative Leaders.

The problem: The list included 99 men and one woman. For those not so good with the math, that means according to Forbes, only 1% of the country's most innovative leaders are female.

Have you ever watched a movie that's so abysmally bad that you wonder how it ever even got made? Where you think, "Hundreds and hundreds of people had to have been directly involved in the production of this film. Did any of them ever think to say, 'Hey, maybe we should just scrap this idea altogether?"

That's how it feels to see a list like this. So how did Forbes come up with these results?

Keep Reading Show less
Innovation