By Lowell Ponte
Even facing a huge boycott by viewers on Veterans Day, the NFL league office refused to change its policy that allowed players to protest by not standing respectfully during the traditional playing of America’s national anthem.
Such players who take a knee, link arms, or otherwise show disrespect, generally fall into one of two categories. Some want to make an ideological protest against what they see as American society, from police behavior to the nation as a whole.
Former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began such ideological protests against “systematic oppression” of minorities, then held a press conference in which he wore a Fidel Castro T-shirt. When questioned about this by Miami Herald sports writer and Cuban refugee Armando Salguero, Kaepernick replied by praising the communist island.
Other young players – average NFL salary $2.44 Million – apparently see the enormous media attention Kaepernick is given in the liberal media for his protests and want such national attention and fame for themselves. Fame and name recognition beget more and more money. They seem eager to step on the flag and anthem in an infantile “Look at Me” publicity stunt, perhaps because most are mediocre players like Kaepernick.
Major networks, seeing their ratings and profits plummet, have experimented with no longer airing the anthem. This might remove the ego gratification and attention some players crave. But for leftist ideologues, this is victory in an age when Antifa protestors chant “No Trump! No wall! No USA at all!” For radicals, tearing down statues of Thomas Jefferson and George Washington is only the start of writing the United States out of history and out of the hearts of Americans. By blocking the televising of the anthem, these America-haters believe they have won a huge victory. This must not stand.
The California NAACP now wants to banish our anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner,” as racist because its rarely-sung third stanza refers to “the hireling and slave” (which could easily be deleted).
Author Francis Scott Key, as Craig R. Smith and I document in We Have Seen The Future and It Looks Like Baltimore, was also brother-in-law to Roger Taney, who would later as U.S. Chief Justice write the notorious Dred Scott Decision. Key’s grandson, journalist Frank Key Howard, would be imprisoned by Abraham Lincoln for criticizing him; Howard would be locked up in the same Fort McHenry about whose stand against the British the anthem was written.
“The Star-Spangled Banner” today could get you arrested if at an airport you began singing its lyrics about rockets’ red glare or bombs bursting in air. And it may be the only national anthem to begin and end with a question. It’s apparent that “…does that star-spangled banner yet wave, o’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?” must soon be answered “NO!” if leftist radicals triumph.
Are the four songs popularly thought of as America’s other “anthems” better? Jefferson might prefer “America the Beautiful” because it focuses on rural, agrarian America, with spacious skies, waves of grain, purple mountains and the fruited plain. Today’s leftists would hate it, however, because every stanza makes positive reference to God. Even worse for godless, multicultural, globalist leftists would be Irving Berlin’s “God Bless America,” which asks God to guide us “to the right with the light from above.” Amen.
“America” (My Country, Tis of Thee) served as our de facto anthem for a century prior to 1931, but it has the same tune as “God Save the King/Queen” of the British Empire from which we won independence. It, too, occasionally mentions God.
“This Land Is Your Land” would likely have enthusiastic support from leftists, to whom it means “Your Land Is My Land.” The song was written in 1940 by folk singer Woody Guthrie. The song is progressive, collectivist, and implicitly says that we own all land in common. If the American nation ceases to exist, at least in freedom, we will no longer need a national anthem.
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