Tuesday, May 09, 2006

O say, you can't sing: Congress doesn't know national anthem

Recommended at My Left Wing

OK - this is just rich.

In light of the "war against the war against the national anthem", we find out that many members of Congress don't even know the words to the Star Spangled Banner that they are pushing so hard to "save" for Murka.

First, you have the fact that all of our "patriotic Republicans" like Bill Frist, Ted Stevens and Pat Roberts are co-sponsoring Lamar Alexander's resolution to require that the national anthem only be sung in English (because this is just as American as drilling in ANWR, building a bridge to nowhere, inserting secret provisions into Bills that would protect vaccine companies from gross negligence and covering up high crimes of this Administration).
Then you have the fact that, oopsie, in 1919, the US Bureau of Education commissioned a Spanish version of the national anthem, and that the State Department website has four different Spanish language versions of the national anthem.

But it is even funnier that they aren't even up to the task of singing the song that they are pushing so hard to "protect". Just when you think they can't embarrass themselves any more, they sink to a new low.....

What do our great Republican Senators to when the world is watching our immigrants march for their rights and freedoms that Dear Leader professes to care so much about? Why, they get right to the heart of the "real important business" going on in the Senate by introducing a resolution to have the national anthem only sung in English (I mean, who cares about looking into illegal wiretapping or lying about WMD in Iraq or blowing the cover of a covert CIA operative who was investigation nuclear proliferation and Iran).

But don'tcha think that if you are going to do something so stupidly xenophobic, I mean, patriotic, that you would at least be able to back up your xenophobia, damn, patriotism?

Oh, just wait, this gets much better.....

Besides the fact that much of `Murka (not to mention Enrico Pallazzo) doesn't know the words themselves. In fact, according to ABC News:

The tune -- and its notoriously archaic lyrics -- have been mangled by singers ever since. A recent poll revealed that 61 percent of Americans cannot correctly recite the lyrics, much less sing them.

But members of Congress? Surely they MUST be able to recite or at least sing it....Sadly, no. And it wasn't just the "evil un-American Osama loving Democrats" that weren't up to the task:

Rep. Marcy Kaptur, D-Ohio, sweetly sang the entire song beginning to end with gusto, gesturing broadly over the final stanza to the gleaming dome of the U.S. Capitol building. But alas, she was the last to solo.

One congressman, Rep. Gene Green, R-Texas, sang the anthem along with a group of students from Houston's Herrera Elementary School. But most of the other dozen or so House members we approached suddenly had important business to conduct and fled after offering lame excuses.

"I can probably sing it with a group," said Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Ala. "If I was in a group, I would sing it."

"I'm not that good," said Rep. Ron Kind, D-Wis., as he begged off.

And Rep. Robert Ney, R-Ohio, a reported target in the ongoing federal probe of former lobbyist Jack Abramoff, waved us off claiming, "I'm on the phone with my wife."

One technique several congressmen used to demonstrate their lyrical knowledge of the "The Star-Spangled Banner" without having to perform it was to offer arcane facts about the song as they walked away.

"Francis Scott Key," shouted Rep. Jim Costa, D-Calif., as he rushed to the House floor. "In the harbor. The flag still standing."

"Oh, say can you see ABC?" mocked Rep. Paul Gillmor, R-Ohio.

Across the Capitol Plaza, Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., had an important lunch to attend and so wouldn't sing along. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas., said, "I can't sing," but Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., offered a spirited version unique to fans of the Baltimore Orioles who emphasize the "Oh!" at the start of baseball game renditions.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., sang the first stanzas so robustly we weren't about to challenge his knowledge of the rest. South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham was gentlemanly when we put him on the spot, saying, "I am like 61 percent of Americans. If I had to get up and recite the national anthem, I would fail miserably."

Piss poor efforts, but at least they took it all in stride, right?

Oh, no. NO...NOOOOOO!!!! - how could those evil people from ABC ambush Congress like that? And the Repugs did what they do best - whine and squeal like a stuck pig:

According to the video (go to 2:50 into the video), the Republicans accused ABC News of "ambush journalism" and Republican Senate staffers also circulated an email to the Blackberries of Senators warning them that:

there is a news organization with camera and crew that is gong around asking members to recite the national anthem.

Oh, the horror!!! Those mean evil people in the lib'rul media.

1 comment:

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