Did President Obama continue talking on a cell phone while saluting marines as he exited the Marine One helicopter, as a popular photo suggests?
The photo is real.
It has been shared with angry captions such as:
- “Like” if you think the President should get off his phone and return the salute properly!
- That is very disrespectful to our military, wonder what he would think if they were to talk on their cell phones while he was coming of the plane. He is so full of himself and rude. he’s not worth a vote at all.
Even though the photo has only caught attention in October 2012, it was apparently taken on January 29, 2010 in Baltimore. No doubt the election season has fueled the photo’s proliferation.
Here is the photo being circulated:
Here is the same photo from a much wider angle:
The other side of the political aisle can take solace that GOP President George Bush was also criticized for saluting marines on several occasions while carrying his dog Barney, as seen below. Of course Obama critics will claim that there is a difference between the distraction of a cell phone and carrying an object under one’s arm. That’s an argument we’ll let the partisans fight out.
Ronald Reagan began the modern trend of the Presidential salute, often while exiting Air Force One or Marine One (the presidential helicopter). There have been many commentaries over the years critiquing each president’s salute. Below is an interesting argument that the President should never give a military salute unless he is in uniform. It is also pointed out that President, and former General, Dwight D. Eisenhower never saluted after his military retirement.