I am going to insert little short pieces here and there to break up this series and try to make it seem less like ready an essay from history class. Video’s, pictures, memes, screenshots previous encounters on Facebook. Anything that can add to the conversation. Enjoy.
Now that I have you feeling all Patriotic, I will educate you on the actual story of our National Anthem. If you are reading this series in order and watched the video, you would are probably expecting what follows. If you didn’t read the previous post, you might want to for context. If you didn’t watch the movie, see the previous statement. On to business.
First, the tone this piece is presented in, implies that the British were usurping upon the United States. Also, the conflict in this piece could be easily mistaken for the Revolutionary War, thanks to the narrator never naming the specific conflict. The ‘Star Spangled Banner’ was written during The War of 1812. The War of 1812 was instigated by the United States for the purpose of taking territory in Canada from the British. It was primarily an act of aggression on the part of the United States. The British may have been the aggressors in the stated battle, but America started the fight. It ended basically a in a draw with the US taking a lot of defeats in individual battles, and that is why we don’t talk about that war much in “History” class.
Second, the ‘Star Spangled Banner’ actually has 4 verses. If we are going to analyze a song, we have to take the entire song into consideration for proper context. We only sing the first verse of the National Anthem, and for good reason. When you get to the third verse, there is some peculiar language referencing the revenge that will be wrought upon the slaves that had escaped and were, at the time, fighting against America on the behalf of the British. Francis Scott Key, was not the pure spirited Patriot this piece makes him out to be. He was more a jilted slave owner upset over his “property” fighting against his cause, and he was looking forward to punishing them for their transgressions.
Finally, after the British had held off the Americans, the US Government had the audacity to request the return pf their property, namely slaves. Of course the British refused and granted the slaves who had escaped, Canadian citizenship.
This video changed nothing about the way I feel about the National Anthem. It is a flawed song, written by a flawed man, at a flawed point in our history. I can say that and still love this country. A song or a flag has little bearing on that.