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Tag Archives: Kingston Trio
October 22, 2012Posted by on
I’ve never liked our National Anthem. It’s a song about a war. I’d prefer an anthem to be something like America the Beautiful. But, not ours. In some respects when you look at our history, maybe an anthem about a war makes sense.
I’ve also never been one to engage in displays of patriotism and I’m extremely put-off by those who do so. All the flags and salutes and U-S-A chants just do nothing for me. (It is, by the way, not just with respect to my country, but with respect to my teams as well. Yes, I own a Giants hat and a couple of Giants T-Shirts, but other than those, I don’t own things that have my team names on them and I don’t have my car plastered with the stickers of my favorite teams.) In other words, I’m mostly a quiet fan. A quiet citizen.
Yesterday, I had the pleasure of going to the SF Giants game 6 playoff against the Cardinals. I took my oldest, who is a senior in high school. We had a conversation about the current China-Japan dispute about some islands that consist of a grand total of 2 square miles (I think). I used it as an example of the stupidity of nations. He responded that was why wars were stupid and mentioned how many of the battles in World War I were fought over a mile of land. Thousands of men died for the advantage of a mile here and a mile there.
I’m not a rah-rah kind of guy. (Well, except when I’m cheering the Giants on in their place in Game 6 of the NLCS.) I’d prefer that nationalism go the way of the dinosaur. I don’t like labels and categories and divisions. We aren’t, or shouldn’t be, Italian-Americans and African-Americans, gays or straights, Catholics or Jews or Atheists. Instead, we should be Americans. But, that actually isn’t enough either. We should be people — just like the people who reside elsewhere.
Which makes my feeling during the national anthem yesterday so weird. Maybe it’s my age — I find myself tearing up more these days at odd things. Like this. The sight of a huge American flag unfurled in the outfield, a tugboat shooting fountains of water into the air, and two jets flying over the stadium in an ear-shattering roar, while the Kingston Trio harmonized the national anthem.
Just plain weird.
Which is really my long-winded way of telling you that I got to see the game last night and we’re moving on to game 7 tonight. Go Giants!