The Flag Code
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Today, June 14th, is Flag Day. This holiday commemorates the adoption of the American Flag on June 14, 1777. While not a holiday people get off of work for, most people honor Flag Day by displaying the American flag on their property.
To honor our American flag, know the proper observances when displaying your flag.
Flag Terminology & Symbolism
The upper left hand corner of the flag, the white stars on a blue background, is called the “Union”.
The official colors of the flag are “White”, “Old Glory Red”, and “Old Glory Blue”.
There is no official symbolism to the colors of the flag. Symbolism ascribed to flag colors today is just the creation of “sentimental writers and orators,” as described by the official website of the US Flag.
Though, symbolism was attached to the colors of our official Great Seal. White represents purity and innocence. Red represents hardiness and valor. Blue represents vigilance, perseverance, and justice. The image to the right is the final submitted drawing to Congress as the basis for our Great Seal back in 1782.
The House of Representatives did publish a report in the 1970’s suggesting, “The star is a symbol of the heavens and the divine goal to which man has aspired from time immemorial; the stripe is symbolic of the rays of light emanating from the sun.”
The Flag Code
The standard etiquette to respecting and honoring the American Flag is called “The Flag Code”. Some highlights of the code follows.
*The only exception is during a church service conducted by a Naval Chaplain for Navy personnel on a ship at sea. In this case, a church pennant may be placed higher.
When a flag gets old and no longer is a fit symbol to serve our country, is should be destroyed by burning in a dignified manner. Many American Legion Posts, VFW Posts, Boy Scout Troops, Girl Scout Groups, and Cub Scout Packs perform ceremonial flag burnings to retire American flags.