Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Why the Anthem but Not the Bison?

I wonder if the folks who get butthurt about people not standing for “The Star-Spangled Banner” (which only became the national anthem when signed into law in 1931 by Herbert Hoover, another winner of a president [and unfortunately the one from my home state]) remember to stand when a bald eagle (national symbol since 1782) flies overhead, or an American bison (national mammal since 2016) licks their windshields...

Soldiers, sailors (my dad was Navy and Coast Guard, grandfather, Marines), sports figures, and citizens failed to stand for the national anthem for more than 150 years. They were not charged with sedition. They did their jobs: Creating our nation, protecting it from invaders, keeping it united, and keeping us entertained — all without an anthem. 

I usually stand for it, but still, it’s a song whose rendering makes all the difference.

Rosanne Barr’s rendition hardly deserves the reverence that Whitney Houston’s did, does it? And if someone forgets the words while singing it, is it even the same song anymore?

I can’t imagine those folks who fight tooth and nail over their precious rebel battle symbols could possibly give a rat’s ass about the national anthem. If the Stars & Stripes is so holy to that set, how dare they have another mistress?

Loving one’s country is more than standing for a flag or an anthem. This country is founded on people — largely good people — as well as laws and a Constitution that not only protects a citizen’s right to not stand, your right to protest, but also the right to not be brutalized by the States or their police powers. 

C’mon folks. It’s a ruse. 

This controversy is no more today than what codifying the national anthem could have been in 1931: A distraction. They are trying to force the chins of citizens away from the real problems that plague this country — including its territories — and toward a red herring of nationalism to divert attention from obvious failures of government.

Kneeling does not make one a traitor. And standing at attention doesn’t make you a patriot anymore than kneeling in church makes you a Christian — your actions and your conscience are what define you.

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