Sunday, March 02, 2008

Any Flag Etiquette Experts Out There?

When a flag is retired from service, usually due to age and damage, it is respectful to burn it. Tossing it into a dumpster is not kosher.

The most horrifying flag etiquette violation in recent memory was Farah Fawcett arriving at the Oscars with an American flag as the train of her dress. Ostensibly, this was a patriotic action, but mostly I just saw our flag being dragged across the floor.

A couple of years ago, a realtor planted plastic American flags on all the lawns in my parents' neighborhood for the 4th of July, and they later brought it over for Q to wave on the holiday. After a few years, it's showing wear, but burning a plastic flag? Sounds like toxic fumes to me. Let me know if you have any ideas.


Gunfighter said...

1. Put it through a shredder, mix it with shredded paper.

2. Bag it (paper, of course).

3. Take it to your nearest American Legion post, and ask them to dispose of it for you in their annual burning of retired flags.

appleseed said...

Gunfighter hit it right on the head!
You can also give them to a Boy or Girl Scout troop. They usually do a retirement ceremony at camps...

And thank you for not just tossing it, even the plastic ones!

tali said...

Wow, I never knew that burning is the appropriate action! It does make sense, although I think it's ironic that burning is both a very respectful and a very disrespectful way of disposing of our flag, depending on who's doing the disposing.

ewe are here said...

Plastic? I think I would shred it, myself. Not a 'real' flag in my mind, cloth, which of course should be burned or donated.

kittenpie said...

Tali - actually, the burning of the flag in protest stems from suggesting that our flag is being tarnished and that we need to restore its dignity by burning it properly.

I don't know, but I would think that either gunfighter's suggestion, or perhaps a burial? Does burial work?