What is a Salute?

sa·lute

noun: salute; plural noun: salutes

* a gesture of respect, homage, or polite recognition or acknowledgment, esp. one made to or by a person when arriving or departing.”he raises his arms in a triumphant salute”
* a prescribed or specified movement, typically a raising of a hand to the head, made by a member of a military or similar force as a formal sign of respect or recognition.
* the discharge of a gun or guns as a formal or ceremonial sign of respect or celebration.
“a twenty-one-gun salute”
* Fencing
the formal performance of certain guards or other movements by fencers before engaging.

verb: salute; 3rd person present: salutes; past tense: saluted; past participle: saluted; gerund or present participle: saluting

*make a formal salute to.
“don’t you usually salute a superior officer?”


I was told when I joined the service that an American salute always had the hand slightly tipped forward because we had never been defeated in war and our hand was covered so that the enemy couldn’t see if we carried any weapons. Makes sense to me.

US Salute

Ship’s Navigator Lt. j.g. Shaina Hayden renders honors to the national anthem during the commissioning ceremony for the littoral combat ship USS Freedom (LCS 1) at Veterans Park in Milwaukee, Wis.

I was also told that when someone salutes presenting their palm to the other, that meant that their country had been defeated and that they would not lift arms against the one who was being saluted. So their empty hand was shown as proof.

Pakistan Salute

Pakistan army soldiers with the Pakistan 67th Medical Battalion salute during a transfer of authority ceremony with U.S. Army soldiers of the 212th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital in Muzaffarabad, Pakistan, on Feb. 16, 2006. The Pakistan Medical Battalion will provide medical treatment to victims of the devastating earthquake that struck the region Oct. 8, 2005.

So, using the reasoning taught to me by our own government (although strangely undocumented) Shouldn’t we be changing the incline of our Salute? No longer are we the proud nation that showed no arms to any other. Our hand is weak and empty, our pride is gone.

I’d like to point at one president or politician but you know, it is our own fault. We need to get out and vote, tell our families to get out and vote, and we need to take care of our servicemen (the term includes women) so they can take care of us.

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