A San Francisco-area high school has banned the playing of the national anthem because of a racially insensitive (and little used) third verse.
Student body leaders at California High School in San Ramon decided to drop the Star-Spangled Banner from rallies effective as of January 19 without any kind of campus-wide discussion or consensus building.
Earlier this month, the president of the Associated Student Body at the school explained the decision in an open letter published in the student newspaper, The Californian, stating that she and the other officers deemed the anthem language unacceptable, necessitating the elimination of the anthem itself from group activities.
We had nothing but good intentions by removing the song so that we could be fully inclusive to our student body. More specifically, the third verse of our National Anthem, “The Star Spangled Banner,” states: “No refuge could save the hireling and slave, From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave, And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave, O’er the land of the free and home of the brave.”
We understand that this third verse is not included when the anthem is performed, but still, what does this tell us? This verse translated, finds joy in the killing of African-Americans. To think that our nation’s anthem once had the word slave and “land of the free” in the same sentence leaves me speechless.
When asked, the school district responded that the student group is granted autonomy in its decision making, SFGate reported.
A separate story in The Californian indicated that the anthem will be shelved for the remainder of the school year, with a decision on future years held in abeyance.
In a number of interviews, student Dennis Fiorentinos has gone public with his disagreement about the decision.
I respect their decision to make the change and I understand why they did it, but I feel that the anthem doesn’t stand for that. I feel that California High School honoring and respecting those who have died protecting our freedom is more important.
Other students and their families generally share the same feelings, as one San Ramon parent wrote to the Gateway Pundit.
Effectively a handful of disgruntled snowflakes did not like a reference to “the hireling and slave” in the third verse of the Star-Spangled Banner. As a result, the national anthem will no longer be played at student gatherings. The school administration put out a piece this afternoon claiming that they were attempting to be inclusive and mindful of issues which may make some students uncomfortable. Of course, they don’t take the feelings of the mainstream into account with their radicalized agenda on issues involving gender or other hot topics. It seems that only the left is given the benefit of the doubt on these things. Frankly, I’m tired of being on the defensive.
Several commenters under the student newspaper articles have implied that the student leaders should get an incomplete on their homework. They insist that the “hireling and slave” language refers to the British use of German Hessian mercenaries in the Revolutionary War and slaves is about the British practice of kidnapping Americans to serve on British warships, primarily during the War of 1812. According to Fox News, a widespread debate still exists among historians as to what the Francis Scott Key lyrics allude to.
As regular Natural News readers are well aware, the once Golden State is now the pinnacle of pandering with virtue-signaling, politically correct Democrats in complete control of virtually all government and educational institutions. (Related: Read more about the excesses of the PC movement at CampusInsanity.com.)
In the name of inclusion, social justice, and other empty platitudes, the far-left in California and throughout America is actually driving a wedge between and among people. That said, so-called progressives generally engage in the very behaviors that they accuse their ideological opponents of committing. Since they have to live in the same country as everyone else, the fundamental question is what is their end game?