Monday, April 27, 2009

United States Flag Code

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Wikisource has original text related to this article:
United States Flag Code

A proper means of disposing of an American flag. This box was found in a public library.
The United States Flag Code establishes advisory rules for display and care of the flag of the United States. It is Section 1 of Title 4 of the United States Code (4 U.S.C.1 et seq). This is a U.S. federal law, but there is no penalty for failure to comply with it and it is not widely enforced indeed, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that punitive enforcement would conflict with the First Amendment right to freedom of speech. (A Flag Desecration Amendment has been proposed from time to time and, if ever passed into law, would override Supreme Court rulings on this matter.)
This etiquette is as applied within U.S. jurisdiction. In other countries and places, local etiquette applies.
1 Standards of respect
2 Displaying the flag outdoors
3 Displaying the flag indoors
4 Parading and saluting the flag
5 Pledge of Allegiance and national anthem
6 The flag in mourning
7 History
8 Notes and references
9 External links
Standards of respect
The flag should never be dipped to any person or thing, unless it is the ensign responding to a salute from a ship of a foreign nation. This tradition comes from the 1908 Summer Olympics in London, where countries were asked to dip their flag to King Edward VII: the American team flag bearer, Ralph Rose, refused, teammate Martin Sheridan famously proclaiming that "this flag dips to no earthly king."[1] This tradition was codified as early as the 1911 U.S. Army drill regulations.[2]
The flag should never be displayed with the union (the starred blue canton) down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property. [3]
The flag should not be used as "wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery",[1] or for covering a speaker's desk, draping a platform, or for any decoration in general (exception for coffins). Bunting of blue, white and red stripes is available for these purposes. The blue stripe of the bunting should be on the top.
The flag should never be drawn back or bunched up in any way.
The flag should never be used as a covering for a ceiling.
The flag should never be used for any advertising purpose. It should not be embroidered, printed, or otherwise impressed on such articles as cushions, handkerchiefs, napkins, boxes, or anything intended to be discarded after temporary use. Advertising signs should not be attached to the staff or halyard.
The flag should not be used as part of a costume or athletic uniform, except that a flag patch may be used on the uniform of military personnel, firefighters, police officers, and members of patriotic organizations.
Note that on US Military combat uniforms, where the flag is put on the sleeve of the uniform, the flag patch is displayed with the stars facing forward, in the direction the wearer is facing. This is done to give the impression of the flag flowing in the wind while being carried forward across the battlefield. This is known as the "Reverse Field Flag." Note that many athletic teams appear to have ignored this rule, notably, the 2008 U.S. Olympic team, Major League Baseball placed the flag on the back of all uniforms following the 9/11 attacks, and the U.S. team in the 2006 World Baseball Classic wore a flag patch on their left sleeve. For Independence Day and 9/11 2008, with the exception of the Toronto Blue Jays, all Major League Baseball teams will wear navy-blue versions of their hats, with an American flag imposed inside their own logo. (The Blue Jays will wear caps with the Canadian flag imposed in their logo on Canada Day).
Flag lapel pins may also be worn (they are considered replicas) and are worn near the heart.
The flag should never have placed on it, or attached to it, any mark, insignia, letter, word, number, figure, or drawing of any kind.
The flag should never be used as a receptacle for receiving, holding, carrying, or delivering anything.
The flag should never be stepped on.
The flag should not be draped over the hood, top, sides, or back of a vehicle, railroad train, or boat.
When the flag is lowered, no part of it should touch the ground or any other object; it should be received by waiting hands and arms. To store the flag it should be folded neatly and ceremoniously.
The flag should be cleaned and mended when necessary.
If the flag is being used at a public or private estate, it should not be hung (unless at half mast or when an all weather flag is displayed[4]) during rain or violent weather.
When a flag is so tattered that it can no longer serve as a symbol of the United States, it should be destroyed in a dignified manner, preferably by burning. The...(and so on)

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