News of the G20 Summit in Germany this past week focused heavily on the chaos being spread by protestors and rioters. The destruction and civil unrest overshadowed most of the political discussions. There was one moment, though, that Trump supporters are holding up as a sign of the President’s character.
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As Trump approached Marine One on Saturday, the prop wash from the helicopter blew the hat off of a Marine posted beside the helicopter’s stairs.
President Trump didn’t hesitate. He stepped forward and picked up the hat. Recognizing the strict uniform conventions of the Marine, President Trump didn’t simply hand it to the man. Instead, he placed it on his head.
The Marine, standing at attention the whole time, held his composure. Then the wind blew the hat off again. Trump retrieved it, but handed it to his Air-Force escort, instead. He tried to hand it back to the Marine, but he wouldn’t take it.
Trump then saluted. Some on the internet reveled in the fact that the hat-less Marine didn’t salute back. Some thought this might be a political statement. It was not. A Marine out of uniform will not salute. As his uniform was not complete, he did not salute.
In short, the stone-faced composure of the Marine who didn’t salute was a strict adherence to protocol. That was his job, and despite the uniform malfunction, he performed it flawlessly.