Consisting of 13 stripes and 50 stars, the American flag is widely recognized throughout the world as being a symbol of liberty and independence. As a patriotic American, you can show your support for the country by displaying the American flag in front of your house or business. With that said, you should avoid making the five following mistakes when displaying the American flag.
#1) Reversing the Union
A common mistake homeowners and business owners make when displaying the American flag is reversing the union. If you plan to display the American flag atop a flagpole, you don’t need to worry about the position of the union. When displaying the American flag on a wall or other flat surface, though, you should position the union in the upper-left corner to observers.
#2) Displaying in Bad Weather
If there’s a storm rolling your way, don’t make the mistake of leaving your American flag on display. The U.S. Flag Code specifically states “The flag should not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement, except when an all weather flag is displayed.” Granted, a light rain shower shouldn’t cause concern. Severe storms with strong winds, on the other hand, may damage your American flag, which is why it’s a good idea to take it down in bad weather.
#3) Displaying a Worn American Flag
If your American flag is torn, ripped or otherwise physically worn, you shouldn’t display it. When the American flag is damaged to the point where it’s no longer fitting to display, you should consider retiring it. There are several ways to retire the American flag, one of which is to hold a burial ceremony. Alternatively, you can donate it to a local American Legion post.
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#4) Not Illuminating at Night
You can display the American flag at night — but only if you illuminate it. In other words, don’t leave your American flag flying in front of your home or business at night without some sort of focused illumination. If you’re going to display it at night, place a spotlight in front of it. With a spotlight, your American flag will be illuminated throughout the nighttime hours.
#5) Allowing it to Touch the Ground
Under no circumstance should you allow the American flag to touch the ground. More specifically, you shouldn’t allow the American flag to touch anything below it. Whether it’s the ground, floor or a piece of furniture, your American flag shouldn’t touch anything below it.