I enjoy patriotic pageantry as much as any nephew of Uncle Sam, but I don't play our national anthem each morning. You won't find me standing to attention and saluting beside my recently vacated bed as the flag is raised and the curtains are flung open. Nor do I parade down to breakfast clad in Yankee Doodle pajamas. And when I return to my bed at night, I do not include America in my prayers. But many people in this country do practice such jingoistic daily rituals.
The anthem is played before girls' basketball games, amateur productions of Our Town, annual cook-outs of the Hiawatha canoe appreciation association, Davy Crockett look-a-like competitions and at zillions of other civic and private events. Too many events, if you ask me. From dawn's early light to night's to twilight's last gleam, there are marching bands and matching bunting in every corner of every state. Such bumptious displays seem almost neurotic or even, dare I whisper it, a sign of societal insecurity.
Fortunately, the only events I attend are the twenty-four hour, non-stop duck soup stir-athons at my local Freedonian-American club, which having no beginning or end have no appropriate time period in which to broadcast Hail Hail Freedonia. Consequently there can be no debate about duck soup stirrers failing to respect the national anthem. This is how we Freedonian-Americans keep out of trouble. And anyway, protestors "taking a knee" at duck soup stir-athons would likely bang their heads on the stove when they got up again.