Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

To Anachronism in Heaven

Star Spangled Banner, anthem, PC, slavery, political correctness, war, violence

Symbols sure seem important in politics and government. I love the Statue of Liberty. Others may cherish the Lincoln Memorial and Mount Rushmore more. I’ve even heard people wax poetic on the images we find on our coinage.

But what about “The Star-Spangled Banner”? The lyrics are not general at all, but instead an exultation about a moment of victory in a very bad war that our union almost lost way back in 1814.

The melody leaps all over the place, making it difficult to sing.

But its words are what stick in some peoples’ craws.

No, not the florid, old-fashioned* phrasings. What bothers some people is all the violence . . . and a mention of the word “slave.”

Now, if the song were about slavery, or even mentioned the enslaved ancestors of current Americans, I’d side with the California branch of the NAACP, which wants to junk the old warhorse.

But the offending line does not seem to be what these activists say it is, one of “the most racist, pro-slavery, anti-black songs in the American lexicon.” The words refer, instead, to British sailors and soldiers:

No refuge could save the hireling and slave

From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave. . . .

The phrase “hirelings and slaves” means “mercenaries and conscripts.” Wednesday, on Fox, Tucker Carlson grilled a cheerful advocate of the NAACP position, whose main point was “unity.” He doesn’t think the anthem promotes “unity.”

But what would? Doesn’t taking on the anthem constitute just another divisive salvo in the culture wars?

We’ve bigger problems.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.


* The tune is by John Stafford Smith, who wrote it for the Anacreontic Society. Because the original version is usually called “To Anacreon in Heaven,” and because the phrasings of Francis Scott Key’s originally titled “In Defense of Fort McHenry” are “old-fashioned” and arguably “anachronistic,” we have the title of this Common Sense outing.

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By: CS Admin


  1. JFB says:

    Communication, using the English language in particular, is imprecise. So too is the logic process of the politically correct, especially in its practitioners with an agenda and no knowledge or appreciation for history.

  2. Drifter says:

    All of these groups are working subversively to bring the United States down just as was the last president we had, from his first moment in office until his last. They, the Progressive Socialists/ Fabians, in all their forms and appearances, are the enemy of this country, as a free republic…

    • John F Brennan says:

      The utopian progressives do not see themselves as enemies of anything but rather saviors.   They are believers who can and do ignore all empirical or historical  evidence which is not in favor of their policy.  They maintain the disasters which invariably result from attempts at implementation are the result of poor implementation as opposed to flawed policy.
      They claim they are not subversive but work in the open, stating the are seeking evolutionary change. This while praying for revolution, or a reason to commence one.  Trump is an excuse for revolution in their minds, which is the reason for the present discord. 

      • twv says:

        I agree, Mr. Brennan, with your second paragraph.

        But they are not alone. The thrill of revolution — or, conversely, suppression — lurks in the hearts of most people, just waiting for the right conditions.

        Bloodlust? Will to power? Complete and utter destruction of the enemy?

        Which is where I disagree with the first paragraph. Progressives, like anybody with a normative position, know they have enemies. They desire to “punch Nazis,” for example, so much that they’ll redefine all their ideological opponents as Nazis.

        Punch-drunk hate.

        • JFB says:

          Of course, it is always easier to compel that to convince.

          As for the first paragraph, the intended meaning was that the utopian progressives do not see themselves as the enemy of any society, but rather the source of its enrichment, enlightenment, improvement and its eventual perfection.
          That is not meant to imply they are do not recognize that they have enemies, but rather that they do not recognize themselves as enemies. They generally believe their enemies are simple and stupid people who do not understand their motive and moral superiority.

  3. Pat says:

    “Doesn’t taking on the anthem constitute just another divisive salvo in the culture wars?’

    Seems that’s the point.   SJW’s need a cause.  Without manufactured grievances, how would NAACP and other groups maintain their relevance?   And their donations?   

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