The Time Has Come to Change the National Anthem!

I certainly think it has. I mean of course the US national anthem. And I mean from The Star-Spangled Banner to America the Beautiful. What are we waiting for?

Just one question though. And one alternative suggestion.

Some say the The Star-Spangled Banner is racist. I’m sure it is, all the more reason to switch it. But the racist line in question seems to be: No refuge could save the hireling and slave,
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave

Why is that racist? As I said, I’m sure it is. I’m just not sure why.

Oh, and BTW, we could just go the route of the UK, and replace the offending line.

Britain used to have for God Save the Queen:
O Lord our God arise,
Scatter her enemies
And make them fall;
Confound their politics,
Frustrate their knavish tricks,
On Thee our hopes we fix,
God, save us all!

Now, they have:
Not in this land alone,
But be God’s mercies known,
From shore to shore!
Lord make the nations see,
That men should brothers be,
And form one family,
The wide world o’er.

Actually it’s interesting that I brought up the UK. Because that brings up another argument against our present national anthem. It is so anti-British. And we’re not enemies with Great Britain anymore. Are we?


It’s been talked about, but we finally got rid of the many statues of bad men on horseback who fought to continue slavery that some people have been worshiping for the last century and a half and they are still crying about that. We have people who ave sided with a deadly disease that we could have reduced significantly, but instead chose to help spread it, as a political statement. We don’t seem ready to make that change yet.

OP, do you happen to recall this incident? You’ll be fighting a losing battle, given how seriously too many people ignorantly worship a patriotic symbol (and by that, I mean they are ignorant about the symbol they’re worshiping).

Why not “This Land Is Your Land”?

Well, 'cause then there’ll be people who’ll complain that no, this land of mine is nobody else’s, and others who’ll say well, gimme some of your land so I can have mine too!

We keep having this discussion every few years. Sometimes it’s the warfare, sometimes it’s that some obscure verse mentioned God, sometimes it’s the hard to sing key, now it’s yet another obscure verse and “slave”… There’s always something.

If this land is stolen and rightfully belongs to someone else, then give it back. Give it all back. All you property “owners”, give your property back and leave “your” homes and farms.

Give it all back. Go ahead.

Looking at the kerfuffle when a football player knelt during the national anthem, i think it would be a massive fight to change it.

And i don’t think it’s nearly important enough to spend energy on that fight.

America the Beautiful is sexist, too. What’s so special about ‘brotherhood’ that it totally ignores ‘sisterhood’, eh?

I’ve never liked the idea of America the Beautiful as the anthem. My personal favorite alternative to the Star Spangled Banner would be the “Battle Cry of Freedom”, the popular Union song from the Civil War:

Battle Cry of Freedom - Wikipedia

We are divided 50/50 on almost everything in this country. I don’t know how we would all agree on a new national anthem.

Every old “Patriotic” song probably has problematic lyrics. They might sound fine to a white male christian. But can easily be dissected to be non-inclusive.

America the Beautiful"
“God shed his grace on thee”. Nope. Separation of Church and State
“Undimmed by Human tears”. Nope. Native Americans and Slaves probably disagree.

More to the point, for some people, is that in many ways it’s an overtly religious song. If there were a serious proposal to make it the national anthem, the people who don’t understand what “separation of church and state” means would have a collective heart attack.

In fifth grade we had a mandatory “talent show” and one of my classmates came unprepared. The teacher told him to go up and sing this, so he did, but changed the words:

This land is my land,
this land isn’t your land.
If you don’t get off,
I’ll shoot your head off!

I have never been able to think of the lyrics “correctly” ever since! :joy:

When the nation got all patriotic after 9/11, I wept at the line “undimmed by human tears”.

I like America the Beautiful. My family sings it at the end of Passover. (Family tradition – my grandparents’ hagaddah was printed during WWII, when Jews were VERY happy about living in the US.) But some of us sing “sisterhood” instead of brotherhood.

Poking around, I found this “inclusive” version, which I rather like:

the first verse is:

How beautiful, our spacious skies, our amber waves of grain;
our purple mountains as they rise above the fruitful plain.
America! America! God’s gracious gifts abound,
and more and more we’re grateful for life’s bounty all around.

I rather like “Oh beautiful, for spacious skies,…” and the rest of the traditional first two line. But this seems like a nice rework of the second two.

The next verse retains the unity aspect of brotherhood, and takes it further:

Indigenous and immigrant, our daughters and our sons:
O may we never rest content till all are truly one.
America! America! God grant that we may be
a sisterhood and brotherhood from sea to shining sea.

After that, like the original, I probably wouldn’t keep singing.

Ah, a lyric every good American can be unashamendy proud of.

Hey, if God Save The Queen/King can have an old verse about rebellious Scots…

But in that sense,

Indeed we have that thing with a number of traditional anthems and patriotic songs not only here but in many countries: The original writers produced these tedious long epics with five or six eight umphteen-verse stanzas, but as common citizens we instead are familiar with just a single one-minute verse-and-chorus (OK, so some like Britain and France like to go into the second verse especially on official or celebratory ocassions. Barely tolerable.) and that is it for practical purposes.

I wonder if we could legislate to specify that the official US National Anthem Lyric is ONLY the first stanza of The Defense of Fort McHenry, and the rest of that is just Francis Scott Key being a windbag.

His manager told him to keep it to at least 2 verses and under 3 minutes or stations (especially WBAL) wouldn’t play it. :crazy_face:

This hand is your hand
This hand is my hand
No, wait, that’s your hand
No, wait, that’s my hand

How about:

My country, ‘tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty,
Of thee I sing;
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the pilgrims’ pride,
From ev’ry mountainside
Let freedom ring!

It has the same tune as the British National Anthem so would really be confusing at the Olympics

Can we all agree Born in the USA would be perfect for the anthem? People who understand only the surface can be all rah rah USA Fuck Yeah! and the people that understand what is really being said can also approve.

IMHO, we should commission new lyrics for “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.”

Nobody’s going to die in battle singing their national anthem, so it’s stupid to compose songs as if they would. May as well make them enjoyable.

Boring, formulaic Egyptian national anthem


Strauss’ Egyptian March

I say keep the anthem but be required by law only to play the Jimi Hendrix version.