- The Washington Times
Monday, July 5, 2021


Just when you thought it was safe to celebrate Independence Day again …

Millions of COVID-warriors across America emerged into the blinding sunlight from their mountainside pillbox bunkers this weekend after President Biden granted them permission to celebrate July 4 — but only “socially-distanced” and masked outside with 16-cent hot dogs, of course.

Now come the unabashed racists at the Public Broadcasting Service with a television program called “A Capitol Fourth” featuring a former beauty queen singing what the racist media dutifully called “the Black National Anthem.”

Say what?

These bigots have so indelibly segregated America into racial groups that they now promote various “national anthems” based on the color of one’s skin? Truly nuts.

It raises a few interesting questions. What, for example, is the “White national anthem”? Or, the “LGBTQ national anthem”? What is the “American skinhead national anthem?” ”What is the “neo-con national anthem?”

The temptation here is to roll your eyes, spit into the campfire and crack open another can of cold beer. But the Biden administration said nothing about allowing you to celebrate the Fourth with a cold beer or an open fire. And everyone knows how snappish these people get over disrespectful eye-rolls.

Little wonder that American child-athlete Gwen Berry chose to turn her back on the flag during the playing of the actual national anthem after she placed third in the hammer-throwing event during the U.S. Olympic track and field trials.

It is entirely possible that Ms. Berry’s epic temper tantrum was a desperate gambit for attention after the spoiled brat placed third place in her event. After all, in America, everyone knows you are either First or you are Last.

Ms. Berry’s real complaint is not with the flag or the national anthem but with the atrocious state of public education in America today. How does a child get that far in life and still be so dumb? I mean, she is literally representing the United States of America in the Olympics and then gets upset that the flag of the United States is unfurled and the national anthem of the United States is played after she places in her event at the Olympic trials.

How is a kid in America so appallingly illiterate that she does not know how to spell “U-S-A,” even though it is literally printed on her jersey?

As President Trump likes to say, “Sad!”

The truly sad truth is that PBS’s promotion of a “Black National Anthem” and Ms. Berry’s “ugly American” temper tantrum reflect an even greater, self-absorbed civic ignorance in America today.

Singing the national anthem, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and respecting the flag are not in any way political statements. They are not some kind of endorsement of anything that goes on in America.

In truth, these observations and recitations are the exact opposite of a political statement. They are acknowledgments that we are all imperfect and that we — every single one of us in this great country — struggle with profound political differences.

Our anthem and our pledge and our respect for the flag are an outward display that while we have these profound differences from which none of us will ever back down, we are all gathered under one flag. Under that flag, we are all expected to speak our minds, defend our differences and fight together to protect one another’s liberties to maintain those differences.

Gwen Berry’s childish disrespect for the anthem and PBS’s strenuous efforts for racial segregation are not attacks on America. They are attacks on the political diversity that thrives only under our American Flag.

• Charles Hurt is opinion editor of The Washington Times.

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