Symbolism and Symbolic Meanings

What does it mean when the flag is flown upside down?


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2014-06-27 14:34:30
2014-06-27 14:34:30

An American flag or for that matter any flag flown upside-down is considered a sign of distress...

US Code:T36 Ch10.176

(a) The flag should never be displayed with the union down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property.


Mutiny, piracy, sinking, coup, rebellion of the people/government.

The fact that any flag flown upside-down means distress is not the whole story however... flags flown upside-down can and are used as a form of protest.

The flag is a symbol of control and superiority. The use of such in any other way is considered "desecration."


Related Questions

When the flag is flown or placed upside down, this is a signal of distress. For this reason, it should not be flown in this position at any other time.

upside down pirate flag was flown to mean No quarter," we're going to kill all aboard".

It is not a protest, when the American flag is flown upside down it is a warning that the base has been captured.

When the British Union Flag is flown upside down, it is a distress signal. Unfortunately, and I find this very annoying, not everyone know how to fly the Union Flag correctly. I, personally, would like the Union Flag to be symmetrical , so it didn't matter which way up it was raised. Or, I would like the Welsh Red Dragon to be added in the top left corner - so there is no excuse to fly the Union Flag upside down!

It depends. In some countries it is a distress signal, in some countries it is frowned upon (Australia for instance) while the Philippines military use the national flag upside down as a war flag (and is the only country to do so). In some instances (some international events!) flags are flown upside down because of ignorance or stupidity. This has been known to happen with the Union Jack, which, while it looks symmetrical, is not, and easy to hoist incorrectly.

Hanging the nation's flag upside down is generally considered an international call of distress.

The US Flag Code specifies that the US Flag is never to be displayed with the union (the blue part) down, except as a signal of dire distress or immediate danger to life or property.

messing with the u.s. flag is a no,no,to old vets like myself,when turning the flag upside down it means only one thing,you and the people with you are in extreme distress.

Traditionally, flying the national flag inverted vertically is a sign of distress, most often that of operating under duress. Letting fly the sheet of a flag hoist, that is to fly by the top corner (canton) only, is the traditional signal of the approach of an enemy fleet.

i think it meant that there was a sick ness on board i think.

When a flag is flown at half mast, it means that someone important (president, high member of congress) has died.

I am disabled, communicate with me.

To honor a special day in history. For example, when someone famous dies, the flag is flown at halfmast.

In mathematics, an upside down A means "for all".

What is really wrong when someone says that the flag is "upside down" is that "the flagpole is on the wrong side". The flagpole should be on the same side as the top left THICK white diagonal stripe. It doesn't matter whether the flagpole is on the left or the right of the flag, as you look at it, as long as the top white diagonal next to the flagpole is the THICK one (as opposed to the thin one).Regarding the original question, "What does an upside down union jack mean?", I always took it to mean, if flown intentionally upside down, that it was a sign of distress.Next to the flagpole, reading top to bottom, the top diagonal should be THICK white, red, THIN whiteand then the bottom diagonal should be THICK white, red, THIN white.

It means that whoever made the image either hates America, or is an idiot

A yellow flag flown on a ship indicates that there is disease onboard. It also the signal flag for the letter 'Q'.

Any flag upside down depicts disrespect and egocentrism. It is not a vehicle for personal protest because it does not belong to any individual.++=No. Some people may think that, and it may show simple ignorance of the flag in question. For example the British flag, the Union Flag commonly aka the Union Jack, has a right-way up but the difference is quite subtle so easy to confuse. The flying of a flag upside down is an old, international sign of distress, originating from the days of sailing ships.

Sounds highly unlikely. But did you mean 'the chicken upside down', or 'the egg upside down'?

The US flag is flown at halfmast as symbol of mourning.

Flying an American flag upside down is not necessarily meant as political protest. The practice has its origin in a military distress signal; displaying a flag in this manner is "a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property"; it has been used by extension to make a statement about distress in civic, political, or other areas. Upside-down flying of the flag was ruled constitutional in Spence v. Washington, a 1974 Supreme Court ruling.

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