Saturday, September 03, 2011

National Anthem “Too Violent”

Goshen College, a small Mennonite school in Indiana banned the “The Star Spangled Banner” at all sporting events because Jim Brenneman, the school’s president, considers the National Anthem’s words to be too violent. Last year, the 1,000-student body school banned the words, but the band could still play the music. Brenneman said, “I am committed to retaining the best of what it means to be a Mennonite college, while opening the doors wider to all who share our core values. And, I invite others to join us at Goshen College as we make peace in all of its forms, even with the National Anthem.”  (From The Pastor's Weekly Briefing)

My thoughts:
It strikes me as quite ironic that this is a protest of the very violence that affords them the freedom to ban the National Anthem.  But along with that, I'd fight for their very right to do so.  Fully living out their Mennonite views would (at least to me) logically put them at odds with the language in "The Star Spangled Banner" and I appreciate their willingness to stand for what they believe while not sharing this component of their faith.

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