I have been maligned as being unpatriotic for mocking young "patriots" for crapping up the National Anthem (and thereby turning the singing of the Star Spangled Banner in a competition for who is the most mediocre). While I'm not conceding the point in any respect, I'll drop it. I'll drop it, and, for the sake of openness, will share the recent argument that arose between myself and EP about this matter. It is only at EPs request I share this, and I don't mind. I'm right and that's all that matters.
Names have been redacted, of course.
Eustice says: So I agree about your rant for the most part, but picking on the 10 year olds and six year olds...really?
Reason replies: I'll absolutely pick on the six and ten year olds. If they're going to massacre the piece of music with their youth it's no different than anyone else doing it. They can sing "my little buttercup" in their quavering voice at half-time for all I care. If they can sing the piece right and correct (it's really not that hard of a piece) then fine - let them sing/play it. But, if they're horrible they are horrible. I don't see any flags sewn by four years olds flying over the ballpark; because it would look like crap. The same applies for the national anthem. If we as a society have to respect the trappings of patriotism or risk being called unpatriotic then we might as well not have such a double standard.
Illogic says: So, just a sweet 6 year old trying in earnest to sing our national anthem should be criticized because its not done perfectly[?] I totally disagree. I don't think that patriotism should be so elitist.
Logic, reason and hope states: OK then, take away patriotism. I don't want to hear a crappy rendition of any song I actually like. It is, after all, all about me.
Faultyreasoning replies: Well see then your whole argument crumbles if its not about the patriotism. I mean, if your argument is that any song period shouldn't be reworked or performed badly, you are entirely contradicting your own argument.....so, mr. all about you, you'll just have to suffer through the six year olds and stop bitching and admit that [for the first time] I am right and [somewhat smart].
Honesty says:if a person can bother to memorize the WORDS of a song, they can memorize the MUSIC of the song. Why should we expect one and not the other? there are plenty of 10 year olds that have the talent ot perform the song, it's just the ones that suck that bother me. It's almost the 10 year olds that suck that bother me more than the older ones. It's like we're saying "it's ok to be mediocre as long as you give it your best." It's not like there is a shortage of people that know how to play the national anthem, but should we let the ones that suck open an event with it just because they give it there all? I bet you're voting for Sarah Palin just on the principle that "she's jus like tha res' of us.
And, it's not about ANY song period. Clearly I believe some songs should be written and performed AS IS and others messed with. I don't give a rat's ass if All Along the Watchtower is made into a polka, but God Bless America shouldn't be performed on a turn table mixed with "My Humps". Why? Maybe it is patriotism, although I'm not about to back down from what I said. But, there are songs that make me happy to listen to them. Songs that give me a nerdy, warm fuzzy feeling. And when that feeling is destroyed by mediocrity or arrogance, I get angry.
GettingAngrier states: [S]arah [P]alin isn't "giving it her best." she is relying on her looks to get her through life[,] and by god it caught up with her. and she deserves to look stupid. if we have somebody sing the national anthem at an event just because they are "cute" then by all means, bitch to your heart's content. but if they are earnestly singing and showing their patriotism--- and maybe messing up a bit because they are fucking SIX or TEN and have never performed in front of such a large crowed, and maybe maybe just an eensy bit nervous, then by all means, shut the hell up and clap at their efforts.
and maybe god bless america should be mixed up with my humps. afterall (sic) isn't that what makes america great? our fantastic fucking humps and our ability to sing and rejoice about them? i think so. and i think you lose. and i think maybe if you felt joy at the effort[,] if it is in fact sincere[,] instead of holding it up to some random marker that only you know[,] you'd be alot (sic) happier and maybe would be inspired to in fact bless america and shake your humps a bit.
Awesomeness writes back: I'm pretty confident I know the difference between what is making someone "nervous' and just over all mediocrity. like I said, plenty of people that age are fantastic at the song. Assuming you're right, I'm looking forward to the Ballet West Nutcracker where they let any kid just dance off across the stage just so long as they do it "eanestly" and show their "holiday spirit." But, alas, some kids just don't get to be part of the Nutcracker in this horrible, elitist world where talent, practice AND earnest spirit are encouraged.
and, why are you so focused on winning? I'm not out to win anything by ranting, I'm just out to rant. I know for the most part my rants will fall on deaf ears. Do you think I thought I was gaining friends by telling the world how much I hate their 'talented" little children? But, it's your own addiction to this feeling of, dare I say "superiority" that pretty much makes the rest of your argument about my own elitism pathetically moot. sing a different tune, EP (just practice it first).
Shortly after this, my argument companion cited "health reasons" as why she could not continue to argue this point any further. The only thing less surprising would have been her stopping her argument "because she needed to spend more time with her family." a/k/a The Mitt Romney Excuse. And, since it is my post I get the last word.
Having our "wittle angels" sing the National Anthem IS IDENTICAL to the Sarah Palin phenomenon. We are letting people who "look cute" set the benchmark for what is "talent" and for what is "right." Sadly, life is not all about looking good. Life is about practice, dedication and hard work. A perty mouth and a twinkle in your eye isn't always going to cut it.