Questions about the Federal Flag Code

I read a copy of the Federal Flag Code today, and was rather puzzled by parts of it. According to section 4,

  • 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.
  • No part of the flag should ever be used as a costume or athletic uniform.
  • 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.

However, I see such things all the time: President Reagan’s funeral, flag paraphernalia, and Captain America are three examples that leap to mind, though I admit that the last one is a slight stretch. Perhaps Uncle Sam would be a better instance of a costume. That fourth part, about burning flags, seems to be under considerable resistance at the moment.

What is going on here? On one side, we have people who want to pass laws to keep the flag dignified and undesecrated. On the other side, we have such a code already in place and being blatantly ignored by the people on the first side. Does anyone have any insight into why this is happening?

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  1. fireshadowed says:

    What part of the code are funerals violating?

    I think I read that there is actually a ceremony that goes along with burning a flag once it has been worn out. This is very different from burning a flag in protest, which is probably what the amendment was aimed at. Just throwing the flag into the garbage is considered a form of desecration.

  2. hmcmodelt says:

    I don’t see problems with Reagan’s funeral being disrespectful. I mean, I suppose you could say that the flag is being used as a receptacle for delivering the body. But I think they’re talking more about wrapping a christmas present with a flag. But then what about christmas paper with flags on it. I feel like they have something like that.

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