The American Flag As An Advertising Gimmick
PG was riding his bike on Skyland Drive Sunday, and saw a new flag in almost every front yard. The flags were put there by a realtor, advertising her services. Two of the flags had fallen down, and one was in the street. This is not respect for the flag.
The flags were an advertising gimmick. The odds are that most of them will not be treated with respect. Many will be thrown away. The proper way to dispose of a tattered flag is by burning. These flags are plastic, and would realease toxic chemicals into the air if burned.
PG sent an email to the realtor. This message is copied below. Pictures are from “The Special Collections and Archives,Georgia State University Library”
On a recent visit to Skyland Drive, it was noted that you were distributing American Flags as an advertising gimmick. Two of these flags had fallen to the ground, and one was in the street. It is likely that many of these flags will not be appreciated, and treated with respect, by their new owners.
The U.S. Flag Code has explicit regulations for the use of the American Flag. Several of these apply to your distribution of the flag.
It is the universal custom to display the flag only from sunrise to sunset on buildings and on stationary flagstaffs in the open. However, when a patriotic effect is desired, the flag may be displayed twenty-four hours a day if properly illuminated during the hours of darkness.
No disrespect should be shown to the flag of the United States of America; the flag should not be dipped to any person or thing. Regimental colors, State flags, and organization or institutional flags are to be dipped as a mark of honor.
The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water, or merchandise. The flag should never be fastened, displayed, used, or stored in such a manner as to permit it to be easily torn, soiled, or damaged in any way. The flag should never be used as a receptacle for receiving, holding, carrying, or delivering anything.
The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.
No part of the flag should ever be used as a costume or athletic uniform. However, a flag patch may be affixed to the uniform of military personnel, firemen, policemen, and members of patriotic organizations. The flag represents a living country and is itself considered a living thing. Therefore, the lapel flag pin being a replica, should be worn on the left lapel near the heart.
The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.