If you're flying the flag, here is the etiquette to follow
Seattle Times staff reporter
The terrorist attacks on the East Coast have prompted many people to display U.S. flags at their homes as an expression of grief for the victims, or to show national pride.
There are, however, federal rules that dictate how to display the flag in a respectful way.
Title 36, Chapter 10 of the U.S. Code contains a description of how, when and where a flag should be displayed. To see all of the display rules, visit the U.S. Flag Page's Web site at www.usflag.org.
Here are some rules of flag etiquette for private citizens:
• By custom, flags should only be flown from sunrise to sunset on buildings and free-standing flagstaffs. But for a patriotic display, it's OK to fly flags 24-hours a day — as long as they are properly illuminated.
• Only flags that are made to resist rain, high wind and other conditions should be displayed during inclement weather.
• Don't drape a flag over the hood, top, sides or back of a vehicle. It should be clamped to a staff affixed to the chassis or the right fender.
• Don't let the flag touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor or water.
• It should never be carried flat or horizontally, but aloft and free. It shouldn't be used as apparel, bedding or drapery. Don't draw the flag back or up in folds. Always allow it to fall free. Don't draw or attach any other sign or image on it.
• Don't display any other flag above or to the right of the U.S. flag.
• When displaying the flag from a horizontal or angled staff on a window sill, balcony or front of a building, the union — or the blue field with the stars — should point toward the peak of the staff.
• When displaying the flag either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be at the top and to the viewer's left. The same rule applies when flags are hung in windows.
• To fly a flag at half-staff, hoist it to the peak briefly, then lower it to the middle position. To lower it for the day, first raise the flag to the top of the pole.
Tyrone Beason can be reached at 206-464-2251 or firstname.lastname@example.org