THE STARS & STRIPES
The United States flag is a symbol of our country and is considered a living thing. Whether you call it Old Glory or the Stars and Stripes, the flag of the United States stands as an unwavering symbol honoring the men and women who have sacraficed to make the exercise of freedom, liberty and justice possible for all Americans. Its shape and general configuration were adopted by Congress on June 14, 1777, a day that is now known as Flag Day, and its display and even your conduct regarding it is codified in national law. U.S. Code, Title 36, Patriotic Societies Observances, Chapter 10, Patriotic Customs, Section 176 of the U.S. Code, Title 36 entitled Respect for the flag and other U.S. Codes pertaining to Our Flag can be viewed on the Cornell University School of Law website at www.4law.cornell.edu/uscode/.
If you choose to “display” Our Flag, give it and those who have sacrificed to preserve the way of life it represents, the respect they deserve. Independence Day is one of seventeen days specifically designated in the U. S. Code on which citizens are encouraged to display Our flag, if they're not in the habit of doing so daily.
|New Year's Day (January 1)
Lincoln's Birthday (February 12)
Easter Sunday (varies)
Armed Forces Day (Third Saturday in May)
Flag Day (June 14)
Labor Day (First Monday in September)
Columbus Day (Second Monday in October)
Veterans Day (November 11)
Christmas Day (Decemer 25)
|Inauguration Day (January 20)
Washington's Birthday (Third Monday in February)
Mother's Day (Second Sunday in May)
Memorial Day (half-staff until noon \ last Monday May)
Independence Day (July 4)
Constitution Day (September 17)
Navy Day (October 27)
Thanksgiving Day (Fourth Thursday in November)
The code also urges citizens to display the flag on additional days that are proclaimed by the president of the United States, on days that commemorate the date in which their state was admitted to the union and on specific state holidays.
The Flag should be hoisted briskly at dawn and lowered ceremoniously at dusk. The flag should be displayed at night only if it is lighted dramatically, as from below. To fly the flag at half-staff, raise it briskly to the top of the pole, keep it there for a moment and then lower it to half-staff. Before taking the flag down for the day, return it briefly to the top of the pole. The flag should not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement, except when an all-weather flag is used.
When the flag is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle, the union (the blue rectangle on which stars are embroidered or fastened) should be at the staff's peak, unless the flag is being flown at half-staff. When displayed horizontally against a wall the union should be to the left of the observer, looking from the street or in the audience. The same holds when a flag is displayed horizontally in a window.
When the flag is displayed vertically against a wall, the union is also to the observer's left. Likewise, when a flag is hung vertically in a window. When displayed directly over a street, the flag is hung vertically, and it is centered in the street with the union aligned with the north or east. In a north/south street, this means the flag is hung across the street with the union on the east side of the street. Conversely, on an east/west street, the union is on the north side of the street. For visual references visit the American Legion website, www.legion.org.
Never use the flag for advertising purposes, as drapery, linens or as clothing, or print it on items soon to be discarded--napkins and paper plates, for example. It should not be used as part of a uniform, unless you are a member of the military, a patriotic organization, police force, fire department or rescue/ambulance squad.
The flag should not be attached directly to a vehicle or draped over a vehicle. Instead, the flag should be attached to a staff secured to a vehicle. The flag should be displayed on floats in a similar manner. When bunting is used for patriotic display instead of a flag, the colors are arranged from top to bottom: blue, white and red.
Never display the flag in a manner in which it is easily damaged or with it touching the ground. Never display the flag upside down, unless it is being used as a distress signal.
The U. S. Code calls on all those present, to recognize the flag when it passes as part of a holiday parade. You are to stand, place your right hand over your heart, men not in uniform should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Military, police and fire personnel in uniform should render a military salute.
If you give someone flowers, and you wanted to be patriotic about it, the rose is designated as the National Floral Emblem. While no color is specified in the Code, a dark red type, such as the hybrid tea rose, Mr. Lincoln, might be most appropriate
Our National Motto is, "In God we trust" and our National March tune is "Stars and Stripes Forever," by John Philip Sousa and if we had a National Observance it should be, “For Those Who Served and Sacrificed”.