All in the Family featured the curmudgeonly Archie Bunker. Archie was television’s most famous grouch, blunt, blustering, straightforward and untouched by the PC crowd. He was the archetype of the conservative male. Michael desprately tried to reeducate him, but he persisted in his breviloquence.

Looking back at the last 40 years, we realize: ARCHIE WAS RIGHT!


A Touch of Class

This video is worth a look.  I didn't embed the vid because blogger seems to have issues, the link will take you to web page with the vid. 

What happened was a Jr. High school Band was playing the Star Spangled Banner and the young man on cymbals had an instrument malfunction.  Instead of panicking and chasing after his instrument he had the presence of mind to stand at attention, turn to the flag and salute for the remainder of the performance.  He is being called America's most patriotic kid and getting lots of kudos on the net today.

I think all of that is fine and I respect the fact that he made the right decision and didn't freak out when the performance didn't go right.  That's all he did that was right.  I give him full credit for not blowing the performance, but that's it.  I doubt that they teach proper flag etiquette any more, given the fact this happened in a public school, it would amaze me that anyone there knew that there is such a thing as proper flag etiquette.

Non-uniformed civilians DO NOT have the right to salute the flag.  The proper response is to place ones right hand over the heart and stand at attention.  If a man is wearing a hat it is proper to remove the hat first.  I realize the kid was cute and it was a symbolic gesture and that most kids could give a flying flip about doing something like this today.  I give the boy credit for making the best of the situation and being respectful of his flag and for bringing a touch of class to the occasion.  What would have made this more awesome is if he would have known how to handle the situation properly and done it right.

Now that I've had my say, those of you who are actually vets can tell me how wrong I am.


  1. The Old Sarge10:51 AM

    You're not wrong.

    OTOH, though, calling the kid "America's most patriotic kid" is a bit much.

    "A horse that can count to ten is a remarkable horse, not a remarkable mathematician." -- Samuel Johnson

  2. WaterBoy11:28 AM

    You are 100% correct, and I agree with you wholeheartedly.

  3. WaterBoy11:43 AM

    Thinking on this some more, I began to wonder if the boy might have been part of some JROTC-type of program, or in the Boy Scouts. If he was used to saluting the flag already in some way, he might have instinctually gone with that instead of the hand-over-heart.

    Your point still holds, but it might explain why he saluted.

  4. "calling the kid "America's most patriotic kid" is a bit much."

    FTR thats not me saying so, that's what I've seen others calling him.

    Do they still do JROTC?

    In scouts you use a modified hand salute, at least we did when I was in.

  5. WaterBoy1:41 PM

    "Do they still do JROTC?"

    Yes. But it's limited to those 14 and older, and I couldn't tell if that boy was old enough. Based on the other kids around him, though, I'm guessing it's more likely to be junior high band than high school...which would not have such a program.

    "In scouts you use a modified hand salute, at least we did when I was in."

    Yes, it was two fingers for Cub Scouts and three fingers for Boy Scouts when I was in, too. But I didn't know if that has been subsequently modified, since that was almost 40 years ago.

    Then again, the boy could also have just been mimicking something he had seen recently, too; being fresher in memory, he might have been inclined to perform a salute, instead.

  6. Soon to be modified to incorporate a limp wrist

  7. Yes, JROTC is still going, as is Civil Air Patrol. The salute should be hand over the heart unless the youths are in uniform, then the Military Salute is appropriate. Active duty and Veterans may give the Military Salute when not in uniform.

    It's cute when a little kid mimics the Military salute (though proper etiquette should be taught), it's moving when one's child is in one of these junior Military programs and shows proper respect. But it moves me to tears when an elderly Veteran before me renders the full Military Salute.

  8. WaterBoy10:47 AM

    I just looked it up online, and SarahsDaughter is correct; as of 2008 and the passage of the Defense Authorization Act of 2009, which President Bush signed on Oct. 14, 2008, non-uniformed military and all veterans may render a salute at the playing of the National Anthem:


    Section 301(b)(1) of title 36, United States Code, is amended by
    striking subparagraphs (A) through (C) and inserting the following new
    ``(A) individuals in uniform should give the
    military salute at the first note of the anthem and
    maintain that position until the last note;
    ``(B) members of the Armed Forces and veterans who
    are present but not in uniform may render the military
    salute in the manner provided for individuals in
    uniform; and
    ``(C) all other persons present should face the flag
    and stand at attention with their right hand over the
    heart, and men not in uniform, if applicable, should
    remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it
    at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart;

    Thanks very much for the heads-up, SD. I've been out of the military since 2003, and was not aware they had changed the law since then.