Veterans Hotline: A brief history on the Pledge
July 17, 2010
The original Pledge of Allegiance was written by Francis Bellamy.
It was first given wide publicity through the official program of the National Public Schools Celebration of Columbus Day, which was printed in the Youth's Companion of Sept. 8, 1892, and at the same time sent out in leaflet form to schools throughout the country.
School children first recited the Pledge of Allegiance this way:
"I pledge allegiance to my flag and to the Republic for which it stands one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."
"The flag of the United States" replaced the words "my flag" in 1923 because some foreign-born people might have in mind the flag of the country of their birth instead of the United States flag.
A year later, "of America" was added after "United States."
No form of the Pledge received official recognition by Congress until June 22, 1942, when the Pledge was formally included in the U.S. Flag Code.
The official name of The Pledge of Allegiance was adopted in 1945. The last change in language came on Flag Day in 1954, when Congress passed a law, which added the words "under God" after "one nation."
Originally, the pledge was said with the right hand in the "Bellamy Salute," with the right hand resting first outward from the chest, then the arm extending out from the body. Once Hitler came to power in Europe, some Americans were concerned that this position of the arm and hand resembled the Nazi or Facist salute. In 1942, Congress also established the current practice of rendering the pledge with the right hand over the heart.
The Flag Code specifies that any future changes to the pledge would have to be with the consent of the president.
New regulations on PTSD claims
The Department of Veterans Affairs published a final regulation Monday that made access to care and claims processes easier for veterans seeking compensation for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
The rule reduces the evidence needed if the PTSD stressor claimed by a veteran is related to fear of hostile military or terrorist activity and is consistent with the places, types, and circumstances of the veteran's service.
PTSD is a recognized anxiety disorder that can develop from seeing or experiencing an event that involves actual or threatened death or serious injury to which a person responds with intense fear, helplessness or horror. It is not uncommon among war veterans.
Under the new rule, the VA will not require corroboration of a PTSD stressor related to fear of hostile military or terrorist activity if a VA psychiatrist or psychologist confirms that the stressful experience recalled by a veteran adequately supports a diagnosis of PTSD and the veteran's symptoms are related to the claimed stressor.
I have more information available in my office, so if you feel you may qualify, come by and we can review your case and send in necessary paperwork to start the process.
Tele-psych services now available
Veterans can now get tele-pysch services at the Craig VA Telehealth clinic. All they need to do is call (970) 263-2824 to set up a follow-up appointment for their mental health visit to be done there. If there are any questions, contact Jayne Scribner at VAMC Grand Junction via phone or email.
Her email address is Jayne.Scribner@va.gov
If you are receiving any type of compensation or service-connected disability compensation at the first of the month, that money you receive is not taxable, nor can any type of litigation touch it.
If you have a situation that arises concerning this, contact me and I will get a copy of the law.
Honor Flight taking off in October
Another Honor Flight is being arranged for Oct. 5 and 6. Anyone interested in going can find applications in my office.
Craig Telehealth Clinic reminder
The Craig Community Telehealth Clinic offers U.S. veterans state-of-the-art technology as well as onsite nursing support and remote practitioner availability. The goal is to provide an extensive array of healthcare services to veterans in a setting that is both accessible and professional. To appropriately plan and coordinate your visit, access to the clinic is by appointment only. The clinic cannot handle emergency needs. Flu shot walk-ins are still on-going for veterans currently enrolled in the VAMC Healthcare system. Questions? Call 824-6721.
For information on these programs and/or other veterans' benefits, call or stop in the Moffat County VSO office at 480 Barclay St. (west of the Bank of Colorado parking lot).
Call 970-824-3246 or use the fax 970-824-7108. Our e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. The office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Other times can be arranged by appointment only.
Bring a copy of your separation papers (DD-214) for application for VA programs and for filing at our office.