Do you know the rules to flying the American Flag?

There are many rules and etiquettes to follow when displaying the American Flag.  Here are a few to be aware of:

  • The flag should not be flown in bad weather unless it’s an all-weather flag
  • If you display a flag at night, it should be properly illuminated
  • Flags can be flown at any time of the year
  • Flags flown upside down are signaling distress
  • Flags should be flown at half-mast when dictated by, the President, the Governor or the Mayor of the District of Columbia

When can the flag be flown at half-mast?  Flags are flown in the half-mast position when the nation is in mourning.  This is done to honor the passing of a government official, military member.  It can also be done to honor the passing of a first responder or following a national tragedy.  Memorial Day is also another time to display the flag at half-staff in honor of the military that have passed away.

Should the flag be flown at half-mast for mass shootings?  Yes, if ordered by the President, Governor or Mayor of District of Columbia. However, not everyone agrees with this.  I have been told the honor should be reserved for high-ranking government or military officials. The individual went on to say that although the mass shootings are a tragedy, they are not of the same level of national mourning.  Unfortunately, mass shootings have become common and therefore it appears that flying the flag at half mast each time has diminished the symbolism.  I want to hear your opinion.  Should we fly the flag at half staff for mast shootings?  Recently there was a major vehicle accident near Hardin that resulted in several deaths.  Should the President declare the flag to be flown at half-staff?  Please send me a comment.

Flag etiquette rules can be seen here.

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