Have you ever had to dispose of an American flag? Perhaps it’s been damaged or torn and you’re not sure what to do? Oftentimes, people have no idea where they should go and are not aware of the proper protocol associated with doing this.
Finding a proper place for disposal of US flags has become quite a challenge these days. People don’t know the right place for disposing off the flags that can no longer be used. With respect and honor being a priority, people want to ensure that their flag is disposed off in the right way without being desecrated or shown disrespect in any manner.
If you are considering disposing your American flag, but don’t know where to turn, keep reading. Here, we have compiled all the important points regarding how to properly dispose of a US flag and also provide some useful information about locations near you that accept old flags for proper disposal.
How to Properly Dispose of an American Flag
Flag Day is an important holiday in the United States, celebrated annually on June 14th. It was first proposed by a school teacher in 1885 and later recognized as a national holiday by President Truman in 1949. This day is dedicated to remembering America’s history and celebrating our freedom and democracy. Throughout this week, Americans are encouraged to proudly hang an American flag as a sign of respect for our country.
Respectful disposal of an American flag should be done in one of two ways: by burning it folded into a triangle, or by cutting it into small pieces and disposing of with other household waste. Whatever method is chosen, the flag should always be handled carefully and with dignity.
Disposal of Old American Flags
The American flag is a symbol of patriotism that should be treated with respect. Congress amended the Flag Code in 1976 to include the statement that the flag has rights, including the right to be disposed of in a respectful manner, as throwing it away is not an option.
The proper and respectful way to dispose of an old American flag is by either burning or burying it. The burning or burial can be done privately or publicly in a ceremony conducted by veterans or other patriotic organizations.
Retiring a Flag by Burning
Retiring a flag by burning is an important and respectful way to honor the symbol of our nation. It is important to follow the proper steps when burning a flag, as it is a sign of respect for the country and its people. The first step in properly retiring a flag is to obtain a permit from the Illinois EPA if you plan on burning in an open area. Permits are free and should arrive within 90 days of application.
With a bonfire permit, one should build a medium sized bonfire away from buildings or trees and clear away debris. The flag should be placed into the fire respectfully to honor those who have served the nation throughout history.
Locations that Accept Flags
Flags are a symbol of patriotism and pride, and many people choose to donate their flags when they become worn or tattered. There are several locations that accept donations of flags, allowing them to be properly disposed of in a respectful manner.
Many places accept donations of flags, such as Ace Hardware, local fire departments, village halls and Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) posts. These organizations typically host ceremonies in honor of those who served the country for the flag retirement.