Pledge of Allegiance & National Anthem
“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
When reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, all present should stand at attention facing the flag with their right hand over their heart, with the exception of those in uniform who shall salute.
- The National Defense Authorization Act of 2008 contained an amendment to allow un-uniformed service members, military retirees, and veterans to render a hand salute during the hoisting, lowering, or passing of the U.S. flag.
A later amendment further authorized hand-salutes during the national anthem by veterans and out-of-uniform military personnel. This was included in the Defense Authorization Act of 2009, which President Bush signed on Oct. 14, 2008.
When the national anthem is played or sung:
Designation: The composition consisting of the words and music known as the Star-Spangled Banner is the national anthem.
Conduct During Playing: During a rendition of the national anthem:
- When the flag is displayed:
- individuals in uniform should give the military salute at the first note of the anthem and maintain that position until the last note;
- 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
- 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; and
- When the flag is not displayed, all present should face toward the music and act in the same manner they would if the flag were displayed.