Proper Treatment for the Flag (United States)

The flag should always be displayed upright with the union to the top left. Flying the flag with the union down is considered a "breach of etiquette" (Sharpman). However, it can be used as a call for help, similar to SOS, if you are in extreme danger and need assistance.

For a stationary flag displayed on a building, pole or staff, it is customary to fly it from sunrise to sunset. You are only permitted to display your flag at night if it is properly illuminated. This means that you must have a light dedicated to "spotlighting" your flag. A street light or well lit area will not provide enough light. With the right lighting, you can fly your flag 24 hours a day for as many days as you like.

Throughout the years war protesters have flown the flag upside down to show that the entire country is in distress. It is still a debate whether this should be considered a desecration of the flag or an expression of free speech.
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