View Full Version : The Star Spangled Banner, a primer

10-10-2016, 02:45 PM
To Colon (as in colonoscopy) Kaepernick

America is the safest place in the world for a citizen to disrespect or even burn its national flag. While an American tourist, Otto Warmbier, is serving 15 years in North Korea for disrespecting their national flag, it has become fashionable in America to protest "oppression" by public displays of disrespect for our flag.

Among the other ironies of such public displays of ignorance is that the national anthem commemorates the defense of Fort McHenry. Among the few casualties to fall in the defense of that fort was Private William Williams, a black man who gave his life in the successful defense of the city of Baltimore. While most people, especially those bent on meaningless protests, don't know that, disrespecting our national anthem is, by extension, disrespecting the sacrifice of a black American soldier.

Perhaps now is a good time to review our national anthem in its entirety. For the older generation, this is review; for the younger generation, read on. You were probably never told what happened on that September night over 200 years ago.

The Star Spangled Banner was written by Francis Scott Key who was an eyewitness to the British naval bombardment of Fort McHenry. It was near the end of the War of 1812 (which ended in 1815). Key had boarded the British warship, HMS Tonnant, to negotiate a prisoner exchange, and was briefly detained. Key remained aboard during the night of September 13-14, 1814, while Tonnant and other warships opened a night long bombardment of Fort McHenry, which guarded the city of Baltimore.