Do we now have two National Anthems? The “Star Spangled Banner” and “God Bless America”? At Yankee Stadium they play the Banner before the games and the Irving Berlin masterpiece in the seventh inning (and not just during playoff games).
Frankly, I think “God Bless America” is definitely more inspiring, more melodic, and much easier to sing and remember.
I do love the creativity that various artists have shown on national television, starting with the remarkable Jose Feliciano rendition of the awkward Star Spangled Banner. The song is just plain old and lacking meaning today – “Rockets red glare?” Please…
On the other hand, “God Bless America” is fascinating to me because of the irony of Berlin – Jewish, but not practicing, invoking God in his heartfelt homage to the country he loved, a place which had given him a fabulous opportunity to escape the tenements of New York City.
I wonder if any of you ever question our overarching pride as Americans as we ask God to bless America rather than the unlucky folks who live in Honduras or Kazakhstan, and do it with gigantic American flags billowing. But I admit, I love the song and would gladly have it replace the Francis Scott Key oldie. I guess I am as jingoistic as the next guy when it comes to musical taste.
Questions: Do you like the dual anthems or should we settle on one?
Does the concept of “God blessing America” bother you?