The American Flag’s Right
The American Flag must always be raised first to the peak, never lowered to the ground, and always right side up. When flying over an open area of the flag should also be raised. When the American Flag is displayed on a wall with an additional country’s flag, it is to be on the (Flags’ right) with its flagstaff in front of the other country’s flag not in the line of fire. Another flag should not be displayed on the same pole or shield as the American Flag.
When a country’s flag is displayed,
it is generally flown flat, as though it were a plain black triangle. However, for visual purposes, the American Flag can be displayed in various ways. The American Flag can be displayed upright, lowered, displayed with a touch of colors, or displayed with the union of three flags. While this was true in the early days of the U.S. Flag being used almost exclusively for political purposes rather than for any sort of art form, today the placement of the American Flag is determined by the current political circumstances of the day.
Historically the state that controlled the U.S. flag was paramount to the symbol itself.
Each state was represented by a separately placed flag that had equal weight in the hoisting process. In times when the Union was predominant, the red state was atop the union and the white states below. When the states are united, however, the union became the national flag and the state flags were no longer necessary. When the Union was re-drafted into the national flag after the Civil War, each state was allowed to fly their flag representing whichever state they originally represented.
The reason for the change in protocols regarding the placement of the American flag
is because the Stars and Stripes represent a single nation. When a country changes from one political system to another the symbols change as well, but it is not necessarily the same symbol. As an example, during the American Civil War, there were the many Southern States which had battle flag orders posted on their walls. Many of these fliers ended up in the hands of the Union soldiers and many of them were lost. The Union soldiers often considered these fliers as their family of heroes and honored the fallen soldiers with a display of this same flag on their walls. This changed protocol for the American flag and now any flag display in the United States should always display the union of the flag while the Stars and Stripes are considering to be that of the state which currently possesses the seat of power.
When a different state is in control of the U.S. flag,
some additional rules must be followed. In the case of a state which switches from one political party to another, the former flag is not necessarily given to the new government until after the new government is installed. Therefore, if a candidate wins the election and is inaugurated, but immediately goes back to the party which he represented during the election, the party must first remove the former flag which was flying over the president’s house before the election. In most states, the union of the flag is only removed when the seat of power leaves the state or when the executive branch retires. The union of the flag is only removed for purely political reasons and no other purposes.
While the union of the flag is currently used in all 50 states,
some of these states choose to display the flag differently. Some of these states are Maine, Vermont, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Wisconsin. Interestingly enough, New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, and Florida have laws that specifically allow the display of a three-dimensional flag (allowing for an animated flag image) on their flagpoles. While the use of three-dimensional images for political campaigns has become commonplace, the use of this unique technology on the grounds of an actual state’s capital is still rather new. There is a possibility that other states may soon adopt this type of flag display, thus changing the dynamics of the rules for the display of the American flag.