US Flag Staff Attached To Sign

Discussion in 'US Flag Display' started by FlagAdvocate, Dec 5, 2017.

  1. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

    Purity Candy.jpg
    This candy company near my home town has attached an American flag to their roadside sign. The US Flag Code §8(i) advises that the flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever, and in particular, advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown. The question is: Is this considered an advertising sign fastened to a staff from which the flag is flown OR a flag staff from which the flag is flown fastened to an advertising sign? Does it make any difference?

    A representative of the company said the American flag was fastened to their roadside sign to convey their love of country to all passersby, but unaware that some passersby may see this as using the flag and love of country to sell candy. I suggested the option of moving the flag to the front porch of their building which is close by and still visible from the highway. Was I out of line to even bring up the Flag Code's flag/advertising issue in this case?
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2017
  2. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

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    I've always been a little "reluctant" to offer unsolicited "help" (advice) regarding Flags and how people choose to display them. As I've gotten older, I've become even more reluctant to do so.

    I try to remember that almost every Section, Sub-Section, and Paragraph in the civilian "Flag Code" contains the operative word, "should". "Should" as in, "The Flag should always..." or "The Flag should never...".

    I try to remember that when it comes to another person's Flag that it is THEIR Flag, THEIR pole, THEIR Property, and THEIR Choice.

    In this particular case, I'm pretty much "OK" with it. Whether their U.S. Flag is displayed off their lawn sign or their front porch, it's pretty much the same thing: either it's "advertising purposes" or it's not. I don't believe that it is, but there are others who might have a "narrower" interpretation of "advertising purposes", and that's "OK", too.

    About the only thing I can think of, off the top of my head (and nobody asked me), would be to "switch" the two Flags' positions so that the U.S. Flag in on its "own right" (road side), and the "open" banner is to it's own left (property side).

    Robin Hickman
    "Your Friendly Neighborhood Flag Man"
    Eugene, Oregon, USA.
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  3. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

    Hey Robin..You have several good points... but I might differ on the last one. Even though the US flag is not on its own right in the photo, it is when seen by passersby approaching the sign from the opposite direction (this is a two lane highway). That's one reason why I recommended it be attached to the company's front porch instead of their roadside sign.

    On a more personal note, I have found that the majority of folks I offer "unsolicited advice" to are grateful for the information. In most cases, they admit they were unaware of the US Flag Code and/or its provisions for flag etiquette. It is simply a matter of awareness, beyond that, I leave it up to the individual to decide. How ever they decide to display "their" flag, at least it is an informed decision.

    I personally do not view the Stars & Stripes as a person's property or "their flag". The flag represents, or belongs to, the United States of America and all Americans. I consider it a privilege to display it while abiding by patriotic custom and flag etiquette. But that is just me. I appreciate hearing from you and your view points. After all, that is what this Forum is all about!
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
  4. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

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    If there are two flagpoles that are perpendicular (at a right-angle) to the building, the U.S. Flag "should" be on the "outboard" pole (closest to the street) and any other Flag (State, Military, "OPEN", etc.) "should" be on the "inboard" pole (closest to the building). Which would seem to be the case here . . .
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  5. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

    Hope you had a Merry Christmas Robin!

    I believe you have noted that preferred flag arrangement previously (concerning two flag poles perpendicular to the host building), and I ordinarily would agree with you, but the only reason I posted this thread has to do with the fact that in this case, the US flag staff is attached to an advertising sign. I did not mean to draw attention to, or question which side of the sign the US flag is attached to. In your reply, I also believe you answered my original questions as to whether or not you think §8(i) of the US Flag Code should apply to this situation, and if I was out of line to have drawn attention to it with the candy company representative. Thanks so much for helping me understand your perspective.

    Happy New Year!
    Bill Jameson
    Vet & Flag Advocate
    Williamsport, Pa.
     
  6. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

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    §8 (i) 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.

    It would appear that the Flag's staff is attached to the sign of the business, and not the other way around.
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  7. FlagAdvocate

    FlagAdvocate Member

    Good point Robin. Now you're getting to the heart of issue. So, in your opinion, it apparently does make a difference (in answer to my original question).

    To sum up, you've stated "In this particular case, I'm pretty much "OK" with it. Whether their U.S. Flag is displayed off their lawn sign or their front porch, it's pretty much the same thing: either it's "advertising purposes" or it's not. I don't believe that it is, but there are others who might have a "narrower" interpretation of "advertising purposes", and that's "OK", too."

    I guess I fall in the latter category with a "narrower" interpretation of "advertising purposes", and I take comfort with your opinion that "that's "OK", too".

    Thanks Robin for your input,
    Bill Jameson
     

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