They say that America is the land of the free. It's a principle upon which our nation was built, enshrined in the First Amendment and the national anthem taught in schools. But as I hiked into the woods to find a place to hide my sacred eagle feathers out of fear of being arrested, I wondered how free we really are.
Jamie Foxx is being heavily criticized for his performance of "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Saturday night's fight. How about stopping this false display of patriotism altogether? What does two people beating the bejesus out of each other have to do with "the rockets red glare" and "bombs bursting in air"?
Did you miss Aaron Lewis's now-infamous flub of the national anthem at the start of Sunday's World Series game? Don't worry, no fewer than 10 YouTube users have posted a video for you to watch. Maybe you want to see what all the fuss was about. Or, if you're one of the many who have criticized him, maybe you just need to get a life.
The War of 1812 didn't gain America much, as a country. It didn't address the complaints that led the Americans to declare war in the first place. We didn't conquer Canada. But we did gain a certain amount of what can be called our "national identity" after the war. Right at the heart of this was a new patriotic (and popular) song.