SALUTING THE FLAG:
President Bush signed on 28 JAN 08 a law amending federal code to allow a veteran to salute the U.S. flag while not in uniform in certain, but not all, situations.
THE AMENDED FEDERAL CODE ADDRESSES ACTIONS FOR A VIEWER OF THE U.S. FLAG DURING ITS HOISTING, LOWERING OR PASSING.
In these instances, the law allows a veteran in civilian attire to salute the flag. All other persons present should face the flag, or if applicable, remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart.
Citizens of other countries present should stand at attention. All such conduct toward the flag in a moving column should be rendered at the moment the flag passes.
HOWEVER, ANOTHER SECTION OF FEDERAL CODE THAT SPECIFICALLY RELATES TO ACTIONS OF THOSE RECITING THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE WAS NOT AMENDED. IN THIS CASE, A VETERAN IN CIVILIAN ATTIRE IS NOT SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED TO RENDER A HAND SALUTE DURING THE PLEDGE.
In any case, a veteran in civilian clothes is authorized to place their right hand over their heart as has been tradition. [Source: eFlorida News 20 Jun 08 ++]
DD FORM 214 -- SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFIT:
Please share this with anyone who's had active duty service January 1957 to December 31, 2001 and planning for retirement. In a nutshell, you qualify for a higher social security payment because of your Military service, for active duty any time from 1957 through 2001 (the program was done away with 1 January 2002). Up to $1200 per year of earnings credit credited at time of application - which can make a substantial difference in social security monthly payments upon your retirement.
You must bring your DD-214 to the Social Security Office and you must ask for this benefit to receive it!
In brief - if your active military service occurred:
From 1957 through 1967, we will add the extra credits to your record when you apply for Social Security benefits.
From 1968 through 2001, you do not need to do anything to receive these extra credits. The credits were automatically added to your record.
After 2001, there are no special extra earnings credits for military service.
Soc Sec website: http://www.ssa.gov/retire2/military.htm
This is something to put in your files for when you apply for Social Security down the road.
IT IS NOT JUST FOR RETIREES, BUT ANYONE WHO HAS SERVED ON ACTIVE DUTY
BETWEEN JANUARY 1957 TO DECEMBER 31, 2001.
FYI – THIS BENEFIT IS NOT AUTOMATIC, YOU MUST ASK FOR IT!
PASS THE WORD.