Jose, can you sing,
By the dawn’s early night…
Or the lamb of the free
And the home of the parade.

These mixed-up lyrics  compare with some national anthem singers who have botched the anthem during public performances.

Christina Aguilera, with her powerhouse glory notes, couldn’t totally kill “The Star-Spangled Banner.” But she did at the 2011 Super Bowl.

Roseanne Barr’s national anthem performance at a 1990 San Diego Padres game, wanted to be obnoxious, in a number of ways – by shouting the lyrics totally off-key, grabbing her crotch, and spitting on the pitcher’s mound

Robert Goulet, who sung “By the dawn’s early night,” tried to excuse himself by saying he was Canadian.

We honor our country by singing the “Star Spangled Banner,” reciting the “Pledge of Allegiance,” and stand when we sing or recite these compositions honoring “Old Glory.” We do not stand and salute the Confederate flag.  

The first official flag, also known as the Stars and Stripes or Old Glory, was approved by the Continental Congress: “Resolved, that the Flag of the United States be 13 stripes, alternate red and white; that the Union be 13 stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.” The resolution did not specify how the stars should be arranged, and so the layout varied.

At the beginning of 1861, there were 34 stars and 13 stripes. The Union (North) never considered the Rebel (Southern) states to have left the Union, so the North didn’t take the 13 stars representing the Southern states off the United States flag, that would have made the South a separate country, rather than a bunch of rebels defying National law.

Then in 1863 West Virginia was added, which was formed from the part of Virginia that refused to secede from the Union, raised the number of stars to 35.

The Associated Press ran a story with the byline “Chester, VA.”

“Hundreds gathered Saturday in freshly cleared woods along Interstate 95 to celebrate the raising of a Confederate battle flag, an event that stirred strong opposition from those who view the flag as a symbol of division.

“Those who attended the raising of the [15-foot flag] from the Army of Northern Virginia said the ceremony was not intended to offend, but to honor the South’s war dead in the Civil War.

“‘The reason why we’re here is to honor the soldier,’” said James Thompson, 50, a North Carolinian, now living in Richmond. “’We don’t see it as a slavery issue.’”

I didn’t attend the Virginia Flagger ceremony of shame, and I disagree that it was not racist. I would say that racism was rife among those who gathered to watch the flag being raised. “Dixie” was sung with pride, as the stars and bars climbed to the top of the flagpole installed just south of Bermuda Hundred Road along Interstate 95.

Did those who attended the event, to honor the flag of the south, wear the robes and hood of the KKK? According to WTVR in Richmond, “The Ku Klux Klan call themselves the invisible empire, but they have certainly been reaching out to Richmond area residents, some who have received recruitment flyers twice within two months.

“Two men who profess to be members of the Virginia Ku Klux Klan spoke with CBS 6.

“The man wearing the green robe said he’s the head of the state network, known as the grand dragon. The other is a regional head.

“Since Obama’s first term our numbers have doubled and now that we’re headed to a second term it’s going to triple, this is going to be the biggest resurgence of the Klan since 1915,” said one of the Klansmen interviewed.”

According to New York Daily News, the embarrassment caused by James Eaton by allowing the raising of the confederate flag on his property is just another reason that Chester will be labeled as backwards by the rest of the country. I wonder why Eaton didn’t allow the flag to be raised on the property where he lives?

Bermuda District is the cash cow of the county, but it will continue to be its red-headed stepchild when people do such outrageous things.

I sure get it that it is “freedom of speech,” just as this column resides in the ideals of the first amendment. But hiding behind the “freedom of speech” to spew anger on a particular community and all the while displaying our community, across the nation, as a town stuck in a time 150 years ago is stomping on the first amendment, or I would say proliferating hatred and amorous in our own community.  

They have done worse than mangle our countries anthem or “Pledge of Allegiance,” they have embarrassed and shamed our county and allowed a resurgence of a hate group that has killed and maimed those who “they deem” not pure Aryan. I suggest a blood test for each and every one of these cowards.

Do patriots live in a fantasy world of 150 years ago, stomping on our nation’s flag while idolizing the flag of a country that never was? Maybe 50 lashes would bring them back to reality even if they do mix up the words to the national anthem.”


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