Lee Greenwood's schlocky "I'm Proud to be an American" is the unofficial National Anthem for red state America. As such, any affront to this sacred song becomes a cause célèbre in right wing world and by extension, on Fox & Friends which, earlier this year, expressed outrage that a public school abandoned plans to sing Greenwood's song that has become the standard prop of any gathering of God fearing, patriotic Americans. This world is outraged again because, as reported in the Murdoch owned NY Post, a Coney Island school principal removed Greenwood's song from kindergarten graduation because she "didn't want to offend other cultures." Meanwhile, the kids will sing Justin Bieber's "Baby" which, I will admit, seems a little odd given that the lyrics are about teenage romance. It's obviously a local issue; but that didn't stop Fox & Friends from taking it nation by doing a segment on this latest right wing hissy fit - a segment that included commentary from the uber Christian patriot (who never served) Greenwood himself who worked in a not so subtle dig on the aforementioned principal's Jehovah Witness religion. But he's proud to be an American so it's all good...
Brian Kilmeade interviewed a mom who was upset about the decision which, according to the Post, is "pulling the plug on patriotism." While reporting on the backstory, the Fox "News" channel chyron used the Post's words: "Pulling the Plug on Patriotism, Kindergarten Can't Sing, "God Bless theUSA." Kilmeade showed a photo of the woman who happens to be African-American. Kilmeade reinforced the lack of patriotism meme by noting that she is a Jehovah's Witness who doesn't salute the flag. Greenwood opined that "there's a difference between allegiance and worship" and noted that he's a Christian and that this woman "should talk to his Baptist pastor or maybe visit Bethesda or Walter Reed Medical Hospital to talk to some of these soldiers who have an American flag on their soldier and why they serve theUnited States." Kilmeade said "that's a great point." Kilmeade showed a photo of the woman who happens to be African American. (There were no photos in the other Fox & Friends insult to Lee Greenwood piece.) The little son of the woman being interviewed sang Greenwood's song.
Hopefully Fox watching, Lee Greenwood loving, God fearing patriotic Americans won't be harassing and threatening the school principal or the school department which supports her because, as said on the "Gothamist," both songs (Bieber's and Greenwood's) suck. OH WAIT, the woman, who, based on the NY Post photo, is African-American, is now the target of "racist rants" among which were the message that she's a "filthy, dirty, subhuman gorilla" and that “N----- and their Jew commie bosses are the scum of the earth." (Fox Nation fans?) And thanks to Fox News there will probably be more incoming from folks who are true exemplars of what being proud to be an American is really all about!
As a veteran, I can tell you with certainty that that song is an abomination both musically and as an alleged patriotic anthem.
These are the same fascists who have no problem supporting “good Christians” who are “under attack” for “sticking up for their religious beliefs.” So a woman of another CHRISTIAN denomination is being attacked because she’s not the RIGHT Christian denomination.
And Lee Greenwood really needs to take a moment and ask himself if “there’s a difference between allegiance and worship,” why then does HIS song invoke a religious principle (a “blessing” from a deity) for a song that’s little more than a jingoistic piece of tripe? (I’d also note that the difference between allegiance and worship is really a very fine line, especially depending on one’s political mindset or one’s sports enthusiasm. If you have any doubts about the latter, just talk to almost any Southerner about college football. The line there between “allegiance” to one’s team and “worship” of that team is incredibly fine.)
And, instead of the woman talking to Greenwood’s “Baptist pastor,” perhaps HE should spend a few minutes talking to her minister or elder. He might be surprised to learn that the JW’s aren’t too far removed from most Baptists (especially those of the Southern Baptist variety)—aside from the flag and other faux-patriotism issues.
If that donât suit ya
Thatâs a drag
Schools out for Summer
Forget Lee Greenwood. The is the song that was popular for the end of the school year and graduation when I was in school in the seventies was Alice Cooperâs Schools Out. I still think it holds up today.