Is it be acceptable for a member of the laity to wear a biretta in public? Are there specific rules on its use?
It could be seen as impersonating a clergyman, which is an excommunicable offense.
You need to be a priest, bishop or cardinal to use one. In some dioceses, deacons are allowed to use it along with clerical clothing. Anyone else shouldn’t. Even a priest who is laicised (defrocked) can’t use any clerical clothing anymore.
Presumably Halloween or plays with costumes is an exception.
Some seminarians may also wear them if assisting at Mass.
Actually that is not an excommunicable offense in itself.
Why would anyone want to wear that funny looking hat? At the very least, it would be a sin against good taste to wear it with ordinary clothing.
I personally think that a priest looks more like a priest wearing one. I am surprised more priests don’t wear them.
As for a layman wearing one… I wouldn’t. Whether it is expressly forbidden or not - I think that’s ground best not trod upon.
What would your reason / purpose / goal be in doing this? Among other negatives, it would look ridiculous with normal lay clothing.
I agree with you. It would be like wearing a Rosary as a headband. Not sinful but pretty stupid.
Since a biretta is not a customary head cover for a lay person, I think it would be just plain weird for a lay person to wear one in public.
For the days when my graduation cap is at the dry cleaners
There is help for this; they speak in very soft and soothing voices and are very gentle people…
So is that a bit like women who wear high button shoes look more like women?
Yes; women who wear the garbs of women look more like women just as priests who wear the garbs of priests look more like priests.
France is exempt from this rule.
Hmmm… maybe I should invest in the button company…