The United States Marine Corps is one of the most honored and courageous branches of the military. Their motto is “Semper Fi,” is the abbreviation for the Latin phrase Semper Fidelis that means “Always Faithful.” Because of their proud traditions, Marines have the honor of guarding the president at the White House and during transit on Marine Corps-1, the President’s helicopter.
Traditionally when a president embarks or leaves the helicopter he renders a proper military salute. However, President. Obama perhaps gave the most disrespectful salute a sitting president can render to a Marine. Obama, when leaving Marine Corps-1 had a cup of coffee in his hand and saluted the two Marines while holding the coffee cup in his saluting hand.
To those not in the military it may mean nothing, but to those active duty and retired military personnel it is considered a grave insult. President Obama is the commander in chief of all military forces of the United States and his actions have a direct impact on the honor and traditions of all military branches. Every soldier, sailor, airman or Marine knows that you never salute with something in your hand. Why Obama chose to ignore this simple fact during a time of war does a disservice to military personnel. Already conservative media outlets are putting Obama’s actions on the forefront of their news reporting. This time it is clearly the President’s fault, so he would do well to offer an apology to the military for his improper salute.