Saluting During Pledge of Allegience
The code has been changed to permit veterans out of uniform to salute the flag "during hoisting, lowering or passing". But it does not address saluting during the Pledge of Allegience.
Although the code change would make one think it is ok to salute during the Pledge, the code does seem to make a distinction between what to do when the flag is being hoisted, lowered or passing and during the Pledge. Is it ok for an out of uniform Vet to salute during the Pledge, or is the hand over heart still protocol?
Jim, thanks for your question. Since the original code change that pertained to situations in which the flag was being hoisted, lowered, or passing, the change has also been made applicable when the National Anthem is played.
While we found no direct authority for it, it seems as though Congress intended to permit veterans to render the military hand salute in the same situations in which they would have done so while in uniform.
So our interpretation is that saluting during recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance would be appropriate, should you wish to do so.
Remember that the new changes are permissible, not required, and if you are uncomfortable with whether saluting is the proper response, it is always appropriate to place your hand over your heart (after removing any non-religious headgear).
Thank you for your participation in our discussion.
Readers, what do you think about veterans saluting during the Pledge of Allegiance?
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