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Which side does the American flag go?... Originally Posted by d Sirs: I am a member of a motorcycle organization and some members have an American flag embroidered over their ...
  1. #1
    EmailPoster is offline Junior Member
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    Default Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    Which side does the American flag go?...
    Quote Originally Posted by d
    Sirs:
    I am a member of a motorcycle organization and some members have an
    American flag embroidered over their left breast pocket. I want to wear
    both the American flag and our state flag, one on each side. Which side
    does the American flag go? I can't find any adequate on this. I would
    assume the American flag would go on the over the right breast pocket
    and the state flag over the left breast pocket. I need help on this. I
    don't want to embarrass myself. Can you help?
    Doug

  2. #2
    kindone Guest

    Smile

    Hi D.,

    The US Senate site (http://www.senate.gov/reference/reso...df/RL30243.pdf) states that

    "(j) 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."


    Sew your American flag replica to your left pocket and the State Flag on your right pocket. You will not have any reason to be embarrassed !


    Please let me know if I can help you with any other questions,

    Mary

  3. #3
    mcponavy is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    Thanks I had the same question...MCPO Navy

  4. #4
    Peter Ansoff is online now USA Flag Site Admin
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    Welcome, MCPO!

    This is actually a tricky one. It appears to me that Kindone's answer is not entirely correct. The problem is that the portion of the flag code she quoted is very poorly worded, and it mixes up two different things: flag patches and flag lapel pins.

    As the quote states, it's normal to put US flag pins on the left lapel. The general rule of thumb that's articulated in the flag code is that the US flag should be to its own right of all other flags if they're at the same level. If you are wearing US and state flag pins together, it's usual to display them both on the left lapel, with the US flag above the state flag.

    The code does not say anything about positioning of patches. The rule-of-thumb would say that the US should go on the right pocket and the state patch on the left pocket, so that the US flag is to its own right of the state flag. Doing it the other way preserves the "over the heart" symbolism, but also puts the state flag in a superior position relative to the US flag, which is inconsistent with the rest of the flag code.

    My thought would be to try one of two things: either position the US flag patch above the state flag patch on the left side, or put them side by side above the left pocket, with the US flag to the right of the state flag. That way, the US flag will be both "over the heart" and in the superior position relative to the state flag. These may or may not work, of course, depending on the size of the patches.

    The military and most civilian organizations (police, etc.) put the US flag patch on either the right or the left sleeve of the uniform. If that's done, the state flag could go below the US flag on the same sleeve. When the flags are on the right sleeve, there's another discussion about which way the union should face. The Army points it forward, so that the flag appears to be flying in the wind as the soldier advances. The other services put it on the left sleeve, which avoids the problem.

    Peter Ansoff

  5. #5
    robert042 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt, jacket or vest

    I agree with Ansoff. Lapel pins are worn on the left lapel over the heart. But the Flag is displayed to the far right of itself with filed to the right. other flags to be worn below or to the left of the US Flag. The US Falg Code is where I got this information, US Code, Title 36, Chapter 10, Article 176. Check it out.
    robert 042 Retired US Army SFC

  6. #6
    Peter Ansoff is online now USA Flag Site Admin
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    Thanks, Robert, and welcome!

    Actually, the current reference for the Flag Code is USC Title 4, Chapter 1, Sections 4-10. It was moved there from Title 36 in 1998 or so, and many web sites still show the outdated reference. A few flag references (e.g., the one about saluting during the national anthem) are still in Title 36.

    Regards,

    Peter Ansoff
    "We live by symbols, and what shall be symbolized by any image of the sight depends upon the mind of him who sees it."
    -- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

  7. #7
    robert042 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    Peter ,

    I checked Title 4, Chap 1, Sec 8 and found that there has been part of the section from Title 36 has been omitted. The part referring to the flag being didsplayed to the extreme right and above everything else. Discribes the lapel pin but not the wearing of patches and wearing of US Flag patches on a shirt, vest or jacket should fall under that designation. Old section is the olny one I can find that gives any kind of direction for that.
    robert042
    US ARMY Ret SFC

  8. #8
    Peter Ansoff is online now USA Flag Site Admin
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    I checked Title 4, Chap 1, Sec 8 and found that there has been part of the section from Title 36 has been omitted . . . Old section is the olny one I can find that gives any kind of direction for that.

    I think that the language you're looking for is now in Section 7 of 4 USC 1. This was originally in 36 USC 175, and I don't believe that the actual words were changed when they moved it from Title 36 to Title 4. In any case, the "old section" no longer exists.

    Best,

    Peter A.
    "We live by symbols, and what shall be symbolized by any image of the sight depends upon the mind of him who sees it."
    -- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

  9. #9
    MD MCAFEE is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    Hello To All Of You. Have Been Reading Some Postings About Flag On Shirt Sleeves. I Would Like To Add To All Of Your Postings. There Are Two Basic Rules I Have Been Taught About Flag Patch On Shirt Sleeves. One: Union Is Close To Your Heart. Two: Union Is Always Centered When Possible. So On The Right Sleeve The Flag Union Will Be Facing Forward, And On The Left Sleeve The Flag Union Will Be Facing Forward. Yes, That Is Why Flag Patches Are Made With The Unions Either To The Left Or The Right Of The Field Of Strips. All Military And Law Inforcement Agencies Governed By The Government Wear A Flag Union Forward Either Right Or Left Sleeve. (Some People Would Say A "Reversed" Flag.) However, There Are Some Organizations That Do Not Want To Wear The "Reversed" Flag Patch, And I Do Not Believe There Is A Rule Or Law That Says Different. If There Is A Federal Wording On This Subject I Would Appreciate That Information Where-abouts So That I May Go To It And Read It For Myself. Thank You For Reading My Posting. Hope This Is Helpful To All Of You.
    MD McAfee/USMC-US Army-Nat.Guard-Civilian/Retired

  10. #10
    MD MCAFEE is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Wearing a flag patch on a shirt

    Quote Originally Posted by EmailPoster View Post
    Which side does the American flag go?...
    Dear Doug, I just posted some information that should help you. I am MD McAfee, a new member - hope you can find it. MDMCAFEE

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