Friday, December 6, 2013

When should the flag be flown at half-staff?

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Liberty -vs- Tyranny

Nelson Mandela died yesterday at age 95. He was a man of immense integrity who possessed a remarkable character and a great capacity for forgiveness. Wrongfully imprisoned for 27 years by the Apartheid South African government for his opposition to, and activism to end the governments oppression of his people, he later went on to become the first democratically elected black president of South Africa.

President Obama has ordered the American flag to be flown at half mast in honor of Nelson Mandela. A fitting tribute to a man instrumental in ending the oppression of his people. In so doing he left his mark on the world stage and became a inspiration for others who remain oppressed by their government. Nelson Mandela example is one to emulate and the President's decision is one all liberty loving individuals should support. Unfortunately many, and it is mostly republicans, have a problem with the Presidents decision.

TPM - Rick Clark, the sheriff of Pickens County, S.C., vowed on Friday to defy President Obama's order that U.S. flags be lowered to half staff in honor of deceased South African leader Nelson Mandela.

Clark made his promise in a Facebook post to keep flying the flag at the Pickens County Sheriff's Office at full height.

"I usually don't post political items, but today is different. I received this notification today, 'As a mark of respect for the memory of Nelson Mandela, the President orders that the flag of the United States be flown at half-staff effective immediately until sunset, December 9, 2013,'" Clark wrote. "Nelson Mandela did great things for his country and was a brave man but he was not an AMERICAN!!! The flag should be lowered at our Embassy in S. Africa, but not here."

Clark said the flags at the Sheriff's Office were at half staff Friday to mourn a deceased deputy. Clark said the flag would remain at half mast Saturday to mark Pearl Harbor Day. After that, he said, he "ordered that the flag here at my office back up" (sic).

View Clark's full Facebook post below.

For those who might share Sheriff Rick Clark's views find below the reasons for which the American Flag may be flown half mast. Note particularly the italicized red type near the end.

An easy way to remember when to fly the United States flag at half-staff is to consider when the whole nation is in mourning. These periods of mourning are proclaimed either by the president of the United States, for national remembrance, or the governor of a state or territory, for local remembrance, in the event of a death of a member or former member of the federal, state or territorial government or judiciary. The heads of departments and
agencies of the federal government may also order that the flag be flown at half-staff on buildings, grounds and naval
vessels under their jurisdiction.

On Memorial Day the flag should be flown at half-staff from sunrise until noon only, then raised briskly to the top of the staff until sunset, in honor of the nation’s battle heroes.

In the early days of our country, no regulations existed for flying the flag at half-staff and, as a result, there were many conflicting policies. But on March 1, 1954, President Dwight Eisenhower issued a proclamation on the proper times.

The flag should fly at half-staff for 30 days at all federal buildings, grounds, and naval vessels throughout the United States and its territories and possessions after the death of the president or a former president. It is to
fly 10 days at half-staff after the death of the vice president, the chief justice or a retired chief justice of the United States Supreme Court, or the speaker of the House of Representatives. For an associate justice of the Supreme Court, a member of the Cabinet, a former vice president, the president pro tempore of the Senate, the majority leader of the Senate, the minority leader of the Senate, the majority leader of the House of Representatives, or the minority leader of the House of Representatives the flag is to be displayed at half-staff from the day of death until interment.

The flag is to be flown at half-staff at all federal buildings, grounds and naval vessels in the Washington, D.C., area on the day and day after the death of a United States senator, representative, territorial delegate, or the resident commissioner from the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. It should also be flown at half-staff on all federal
facilities in the state, congressional district, territory, or commonwealth of these officials.

Upon the death of the governor of a state, territory or possession, the flag should be flown at half-staff on all federal facilities in that governor’s state, territory or possession from the day of death until interment.

The president may order the flag to be flown at half-staff to mark the death of other officials, former officials, or foreign dignitaries. In addition to these occasions, the president may order half-staff display of the flag after other tragic events.

The flag should be briskly run up to the top of the staff before being lowered slowly to the half-staff position.

Rest in Peace Mr. Nelson Mandela. Your legacy will live on.

Via: Memeorandum


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. I fail to understand how you know I have done no research. But feel free to perceive as choose to perceive.

    2. I will add this, before one takes the judgemental position they should first walk in the shoes of the person who faced the racism, government oppression, and imprisonment Mandela did. All for daring to want to be treated as an equal with the right to vote and experience the liberty self determination gives a person. Because of Mandela's efforts a nation and its people became free

    3. May I suggest you might want to research apartheid and set aside the prejudice that many still cling to. Perhaps it is what Christ would expect.

      Judge not lest ye be judged.

      Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

    4. I'm pretty perplexed that our flag is at half-staff for someone not American.

  2. The flag should be flown at half mast PERMANENTLY from now on, for under the corrupt, depraved, deceitful, deluded, demented leadership we suffer with now the United States of America -- as envisioned by the Founders -- and fought for with sincerity and desperate urgency in the Second World War -- has DIED.

    She has been moribund for several decades. The current administration has merely given her the coup de grace.

    As long as I live (hopefully not long) I shall bitterly mourn her loss, and weep for our children and grandchildren, because of the absolute HELL they will be forced to endure thanks to our foolishness in imagining it could ever be possible to compromise with the Devil -- and survive intact.

  3. FreeThinke, why the melodrama? Our founders and the men who fought the war of independence were revolutionaries, they fought oppresoon far less egregious than apartheid. Yet some of us fail to see the similarities. Even with the lofty ideals of our Declaration of Independence we failed at the time to see and end the injustice of slavery.

    I hope you will forgive me as I scratch my balding head. I share many of your concerns, this is not an issue of concern for me. Other than I don't see a problem. Apparently even Ted Cruz recognizes Mandela was a great man and leader.

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    1. I do not condone the murder of children. Nor could I condone apartheid. White supremacist racist oppressive tyranny that resulted in death of children as well.

      Apartheid resulted in if millions not enjoying the right to self determination and liberty. At the end of the day Andie Mandela was a great man and a true just leader. I just checked FT's post. He is correct. As is Silver with his comments.

  5. All of these guys are mixed-bags and Mandela isn't any different. But, yeah, give the fellow his due and a gesture such as this is probably appropriate.

  6. In my mind it most certainly is. Mandela was, for his country and in his time, every bit as great a man and leader as George Washington was for his country and his time.

  7. Mandela was a hugely important 20th century figure. Obama's gesture is nice. That sheriff is a scumbag.


  8. Well said, RN, Jersey and similar comments....

    Mandela wanted freedom, prosperity and justice for all in South Africa... and the world, for that matter. This puts him in marked contrast with a supposed freedom fighter like Yassir Arafat, who just wanted to wipe out Jews until his last breath.

    His past, which Divine mentioned, makes him all the more admirable. The grace Nelson Mandela showed....

    1. In regards to the comment by Dennis that "Mandela wanted freedom, prosperity and justice for all in South Africa"...

      He did, although his ideas on how this could be accomplished resided decidedly on the Left. Under president Mandela welfare payments increased, free health care was extended, and collective bargaining was supported by law. Sounds to me like things someone might denounce as "fascist".

    2. Thank you for that Mr. Sanders Your comment has veracity and I for one take no issue with it

      Perhaps you would now be so kind as to give us a report on how the the general common folks are faring economically in 2013 under those decidedly Left agendas.

      I thank you in advance for your anticipated response.

    3. South Africa was also affected by the world wide recession. I don't know what your point is, RN. My point (the one you acknowledged was correct) was that Mandela governed from the Left... and that Dennis used the word "prosperity". Has he changed his mind about what brings that about? Dennis didn't say Mandela wanted prosperity but was completely wrong when it came to what he did to try and achieve that goal.

      It just seems odd to me that someone would heap praise on a man for wanting something when he (in the opinion of Conservatives) tried to accomplish that goal in the completely wrong fashion.

    4. Mr.Sanders in response:

      1) You' re directing your question to the wrong person. Ask dmarks directly and straight up what he means or if he has changed his mind. I speak only for myself.

      2) It seems odd to you perhaps because... you are an odd personality?

    5. I will not take the crap fest bait and ride the dead horse further off topic and defend false claims of views I do not have and most especially have not expressed here.

      I will repeat my support of Mandela and his legacy, and affirmation of the thoughtful comments presented by RN, Shaw, etc.

    6. I thought you might respond that way dmarks. I applaud your reserved and reasoned approach.

    7. Dennis now considers himself a Leftist? Must be, as Conservatism is the view I said he had (which is why I found it odd for him to praise Mandela and his desire for prosperity for all... if Dennis thought he was going about it all wrong). But Dennis says that my viewing him as a Conservative (who would probably disagree with the Leftist policies of Mandela) is "false". I wonder what caused Dennis to shift his ideology so radically and suddenly? In any case, welcome to the fold, Dennis... if your conversion is genuine. Strange, though, that he says he has never expressed Conservative views here... I was sure he had... maybe he means just this thread?

  9. "... how can you condone his murder of children? I cannot. I simply cannot."

    In wars and revolutions, unfortunately, many children are killed. Does this person not remember the U.S. dropping two nuclear weapons on non-military targets in Japan? Does this person not know about the fire-bombing of another non-military target during WWII by the allies? Dresden, Germany. This person seems unwilling to give any credit to Mandela because children died in the cause of freedom. I don't think she understands what our own country did for that cause. That person's concern seems to be about something else.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Divine Theatre, the "you people" is something even I find offensive. It is a phrase that is meaningless, except to express displeasure in a demeaning way.

      Further, how one feels qualified to make the accusation you made against Shaw with out grounds is astonishing.

    3. Divine: Where ARE you coming from? The grumpy day continues, I guess. I don't know them personally, only from reading stuff here in these blogs. But I am sure I know Jersey, RN, Shaw better than you do, and there's no way I would leap to this conclusion about them.

      I do know from experience that people who make such blanket accusations are often guilty of what they accuse others of.... i.e. I now have more reason, slim as it is, to think that you might the one to step over a collapsed homeless man than any of these three.

  10. Replies
    1. Thank you Jerry. I find it disturbing there are so many who fail to recognize and honor the greatness of Nelson Mandela. He really was a remarkable man.

  11. All this about the murder of children and I'm sure the subject isn't the Sharpeville massacre.
    Civil wars are messy indiscriminate things.

    Sometimes the aftermath of civil wars are messy and indiscriminate also but thanks to Mandela it wasn't in South Africa and that is primarily what is being honored.

    It was an act of fine character in a world that doesn't see that often enough.
    Sufficient reason to honor him.

    Or you can keep score and let revenge eat your soul.

    I'm grateful for Mandela's character.

  12. Well said Ducky. And thank you, Les, for honoring this remarkable man.

  13. There are ALWAYS 2 sides -

  14. Thanks for the link Will. The dates of the report(s) were 2013, well after Mandela stepped down. Perhaps Nelson Mandela is fortunate he passed when he did. These reports say more about the character of current black SA militants than it does about Mandela who showed grace and lack of hatred for the white supremacists who oppressed his people and imprisionef him. His leadership in preventing widespread violence when governing SA fell to him is largely what this post is about.

    Shaw has a Mandela quote up at Progressive Eruptions that pretty much says it all. I would provide the link but am out of state and now blogging from my smart phone.

  15. Here it is, Les:

    “As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison,” – Nelson Mandela, proof that the final form of love is forgiveness.

  16. I don't know if Mandela had anything to do with it but their were elements of the South African government in 1994 that decided to no longer keep track of the racial elements of murders in the country and that this was done purely to hide from the rest of the world the atrocities (rapings, murders, torture, etc.) which were being perpetrated on rural white farmers on an almost daily basis. Yes, apartheid was unquestionably a bull boar (no pun intended) evil and it needed to be eliminated at pretty much any cost but what is currently happening in that country (and totally ignored) is equally virulent (though much less politically correct), in my opinion.


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