ChesterNewMatterWinter2017 - 12

Did You Ever Wonder?

The National
Anthem Controversy
By Charles T. DeTulleo, Esquire


o, I do read the Daily Local News. They have not
had a lot of Letters to the Editor recently and I
have been disappointed over that exclusion. It
seems that other journalists' opinions seem to mean
more than us folks.
However, I did see that the October 4, 2017, issue have
had some letters. On page A7, there was a letter entitled
"Veterans Support Anthem Kneeling." It looked like a
long article but I decided to read it to see what fellow
veterans felt about the current controversy and some of
the NFL players kneeling during the playing of The Star
Spangled Banner. I also wanted to see if there were some
other aspects of The Star Spangled Banner that I had
missed when I wrote an article for this publication five
years ago.
As I read the submission I became concerned over the
comment made in the letter: "The words of the national
anthem came from the pen of a man who was a slave
owner himself and glorified the killing of black men in
12 | New Matter

his anthem's verse..." The letter was submitted by three
individuals who wrote that they are veterans. I thought
that by claiming that Francis Scott Key, Esquire, "...
glorified the killing of black men in his anthem's verse..."
needed to be proven. Since I am a big believer in the
appropriate use of words, I wondered where the writers
had gotten that impression or how they could prove that
I read on and found that the writers had cherry picked
the lyrics that the writers believed supported their claim.
"...No refuge could save the hireling and slave from the
terror of flight and the gloom of the grave."
As a reminder to our readers I recommend you really
research the topic. I recommend you go to the wiki
free encyclopedia site:
lyrics. You will discover that there are four stanzas to our
National Anthem. The below is the third stanza referred
to in the letter:
"And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion,
A home and a country, should leave us no more?
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps'
pollution. 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,

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