White House aides later posted that video to Instagram, and that’s when things went downhill. The White House press department didn’t immediately respond to queries about the salute.
ABC published a story dubbing it the “Latte Salute.” Washington Times ran a headline that incorporated the words “Semper Latte.” Finally, a Daily Caller story cited the manual for Marine officer candidates stating the salute is “the most important of all military courtesies.”
Of course the comment sections in each of these posts featured more than a few disgruntled folks. Twitter also hosted a horde of trolls.
The presidential salute, while not required, has become somewhat of a protocol since the Reagan years.
Carey Winfrey, the retired editor of Smithsonian Magazine and a former Marine, wrote an outstanding article for the New York Times about the presidential salute. In it, he asserts, “when it comes to salutes (and one or two other matters), presidents deserved to be cut some slack.”