Standing or sitting reflects on you

            About 202 years ago, a young lawyer watching a pitched battle rage through the night was inspired to pen an uplifting and eventually important poem.  The War of 1812 hit home when the British burned Washington and then Royal Navy ships attempted to conquer Baltimore. 

“The Defense of Fort McHenry” was written 14 September 1814 from the deck of a ship.  An immediate sensation, it was published in newspapers and pamphlets across the fledgling nation.  Most people know this poem written by Francis Scott Key as a song later called “The Star Spangled Banner.”

            The Star Spangled Banner was widely regarded and occasionally played at official functions, but Congress did not designate it the official National Anthem of the United States until 1931.  After that, it has been played at every official event, the military starts and ends every day with it, and every sporting event begins with it.

            We learn it as children.  It’s a popular and routine ritual in American life; generally loved by all – until a floundering football player decided to protest it and the country it stands for.  Certainly his right to freely express himself, but his ignorant misguided disrespect seems to be contagious.

            Supporting the irresponsible destructive Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement, these wayward athletes misunderstand what BLM actually advocates and sorely misinterpret the meaning and spirit of the Star Spangled Banner.

            In continued black exploitation, BLM and white wine liberals promote the illegitimate concept that black culture is hopelessly entrenched in crime, drugs, and idleness.  Despite the fact blacks are overwhelmingly victimized by these elements, they never protest the thousands of blacks killed by blacks – those black lives don’t matter.  However, whenever police are involved, BLM demands remuneration and retribution in the streets.  It’s a huge political scam for power but never helping the black community they callously burn down in the process.

            Kaepernick and other uninformed sports stars found aid and comfort from hacks like Jon Schwarz who completely rewrote history.  Digging into a line in the obscure third verse, Schwarz brazenly and erroneously claimed the anthem “celebrates the murder of African-Americans.”  He concocted a cockamamie tale that the Brits enlisted former slaves to fight evil Americans for their freedom.

            The line he twisted was “No refuge could save the hireling and slave.”  The massive British military for a long period had to hire mercenaries (hirelings) or they used “press gangs” to drag men out of taverns or off ships to “press” them into service (servitude) to the crown.  The interpretation is a bold faced lie; the hirelings and slaves had nothing to do with slavery in America.

            America is not perfect but our nation as symbolized by our flag and National Anthem is at its core about the absolute rights of the tiniest minority, the individual.  We each have God given rights and this nation was founded to protect and preserve those rights.  It’s not a destination but an ever vigilant journey to spread and safeguard freedom.  It took a Civil War and decades more of legislation to reach all Americans, but a half million Americans died in a war to end slavery – America is undoubtedly dedicated to freedom for all.

            Mistreatment has happened and will happen in America, but American ideals do not condone nor support any form of racism.  To the contrary, we confront it vigorously, so the American concept of freedom is still the best answer.

            What are these athletic activists doing to combat generational dependence, epidemic drug abuse, rampant illegitimacy, out of control crime?  Perhaps they should stop misrepresenting a two century old song and take a candid sober look at collapsing neighborhoods abandoned by those fortunate enough to escape?  The majority of any oppression is sadly self-inflicted.

Protesting music while sitting on millions is pointless, even cynical.  Their disrespect reflects more about them than the National Anthem.

            “As water reflects the face, so one's life reflects the heart.”  Proverbs 27:19


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