June 12 is the Independence Day of Asia’s first Republic, the Philippines, and one of the most visual ways of showing our patriotism is through the proud display of our national flag. But as per my observations, there are many who are still unaware on its proper display so before we start getting creative in displaying our national symbol, here are some protocols we must observe:
Section 10. The flag, if flown from a flagpole, shall have its blue field on top in time of peace and the red field on top in time of war; if in a hanging position, the blue field shall be to the right (left of the observer) in time of peace, and the red field to the right (left of the observer) in time of war.
Simply put, the blue part must be on top when shown horizontally, and on the left when shown vertically, at all times except when in time of war. Horizontally, blue is on top to indicate prevalence of peace and vertically, left because our reading orientation is from left to right.
Section 17. The flag shall be hoisted to the top briskly and lowered ceremoniously.
The flag shall never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, flood, water or other objects.
After being lowered, the flag shall be handled and folded solemnly as part of the ceremony.
I think the second paragraph is pretty clear. If it’s not allowed to touch anything below it, it must imply that we should not lay it on the ground!
Section 27. The flag shall have the following proportions. The width of the flag, 1; the length of the flag, 2; and the sides of the white triangle, 1.
Section 28. The technical specifications shall be as follows:
The blue color shall bear Cable No. 80173; the white color, Cable No. 80001; the red color, Cable No. 80108; and the golden yellow, Cable No. 80068.
Section 34. It shall be prohibited:
- To mutilate, deface, defile, trample on or cast contempt or commit any act or omission casting dishonor or ridicule upon the flag or over its surface;
- To dip the flag to any person or object by way of compliment or salute;
- To use the flag:
- As a drapery, festoon, tablecloth;
- As covering for ceilings, walls, statues or other objects;
- As a pennant in the hood, side, back and top of motor vehicles;
- As a staff or whip;
- For unveiling monuments or statues; and
- As trademarks, or for industrial, commercial or agricultural labels or designs.
- To display the flag:
- Under any painting or picture;
- Horizontally face-up. It shall always be hoisted aloft and be allowed to fall freely;
- Below any platform; or
- In discotheques, cockpits, night and day clubs, casinos, gambling joints and places of vice or where frivolity prevails.
- To wear the flag in whole or in part as a costume or uniform;
- To add any word, figure, mark, picture, design, drawings, advertisement, or imprint of any nature on the flag;
- To print, paint or attach representation of the flag on handkerchiefs, napkins, cushions, and other articles of merchandise;
- To display in public any foreign flag, except in embassies and other diplomatic establishments, and in offices of international organizations;
- To use, display or be part of any advertisement or infomercial; and
- To display the flag in front of buildings or offices occupied by aliens.
I’d like to emphasize Section 34a: don’t give dishonor to our flag by doing anything dishonorable upon the flag or over its surface. It means don’t step on it, sit on it, lie on it, etc.
Section 50. Any person or juridical entity which violates any of the provisions of this Act shall, upon conviction, be punished by a fine of not less than Five thousand pesos (₱5,000) nor more than Twenty thousand pesos (₱20,000), or by imprisonment for not more than one (1) year, or both such fine and imprisonment, at the discretion of the court: Provided, That for any second and additional offenses, both fine and imprisonment shall always be imposed: Provided, further, That in case the violation is committed by a juridical person, its President or Chief Executive Officer thereof shall be liable.
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We don’t really have to be too paranoid about these legalities before we can display our flags, after all these are mostly common sense. This Republic Act serves as our guidelines so that we all have a common understanding on how to properly treat our national symbol, and how best to present it.
Happy Independence Day Philippines! 😀
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