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Do you think children should be banned from singing "God Bless the USA" in school?

Posted by on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:08 AM
  • 115 Replies

School Bans Kindergartners From Singing 'God Bless the USA'

Posted by Julie Ryan Evans on June 11, 2012

american flagI don't care where you stand religiously or politically, when kids are allowed to croon a Justin Bieber tune for a school performance but singing a patriotic song isn't allowed, I think we have a serious problem. The problem in this case is an incident that happened last week at a grade school in Coney Island, New York, when the school's kindergartners were banned from singing "God Bless the USA."

According to the New York Post, five classes of kindergartners had been practicing the patriotic song for months. It was going to be the finale in their big graduation performance on June 20. Only when the principal, Greta Hawkins, happened upon a rehearsal, she pulled the plug on the song and told them it wouldn't be allowed in the show.

Her reason is ridiculous.

“We don’t want to offend other cultures,” teachers told the paper she said.

Offend them how exactly she didn't say, but parents are outraged, as they should be. It doesn't mean that God shouldn't bless any other country, but this is the one we're living in, so it makes sense to sing about it. If her real objection is about mentioning "God," I understand the importance of separation of church and state, but this is so far overboard, it's unbelievable. Whether you believe in God or not, I think you can agree the sentiment is a lovely one, and parents aren't objecting to their kids singing it. So why should the school? God is part of many people's lives in this county and an important part of our heritage as nation. To just wipe his name from the slate is not only ignorant, it's also offensive to plenty of cultures as well.

Also, why did she pull the plug at the last minute when they'd been practicing for so long, and the same song has reportedly been sung in years past?

The school board is backing her up too, but for different reasons. Department of Education spokeswoman Jessica Scaperotti told the paper the lyrics are too grown up” for 5-year-olds. You can read the lyrics of the song here, but there's nothing in there that kindergartners shouldn't hear. The refrain:

And I'm proud to be an American
Where at least I know I'm free
And I won't forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me

And I gladly stand up next to you
And defend her still today
'Cause there ain't no doubt I love this land
God Bless the U.S.A.

The outrageous topper to this whole maddening case: They will be allowed to sing Justin Bieber's hit "Baby", which contains lines like: "Are we an item? Girl, quit playing.” You tell me which song you'd rather have your kindergartner sing.

Do you think children should be banned from singing "God Bless the USA" in school?

by on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:08 AM
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Replies (1-10):
sherry132
by Silver Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:08 AM
1 mom liked this

I think they should be allowed to opt out, but not forbidden for all. 

Raintree
by Ruby Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:23 AM
1 mom liked this

I'm not completely sure how the nationalism that is that song is any different than the nationalism taught in history classes the country over- not to mention nearly every other patriotic song that kids are taught.

When my kids were in school, every morning they said the pledge and then SANG TO THE FLAG- "You're a Grand Old Flag".

Basically, the idea is to create a worshipful reaction toward the flag (I would add, without thought). This idea was actually listed in the "Americanism" section of our district curriculum. Worshipful reverence.

I don't see how this is any different. People should be patriotic because of our country- not because they heard a song that uses emotion to coerce the feeling. Music is really powerful- that's why it's often used as a tool of propaganda.

That said, my kids did sing this song for the veterans day program they put on every year. Interestingly, this same district never had MLKjr day off- but they did take off Columbus day!

mikiemom
by Ruby Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:46 AM
5 moms liked this

I guess you have no respect for children who don't believe in God. I know it's something that you can't comprehend but religious freedom applies to all not just to christians.

Raintree
by Ruby Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:49 AM

This is, really, a stupidly unthinking article. Gah.

lga1965
by on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:53 AM

 No the song shouldn't be banned.

But since I heard it a million times after 9/11 on a country radio station on our PA system at work,I am really tired of it.LOL.I am not a fan of country music, no matter how patriotic it is.Unless its Carrie Underwood or Restless Heart,whatever they are called.

 

kr3918
by Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:55 AM
1 mom liked this
No I don't think it should be banned.
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mmtosam06
by Bronze Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:55 AM
Opt out yes banned no
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moneysaver6
by Gold Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 11:56 AM


Quoting sherry132:

I think they should be allowed to opt out, but not forbidden for all. 

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JamesMom714
by Bronze Member on Jun. 11, 2012 at 12:01 PM
I don't think it should be banned. If some kids don't want to sing it that should be allowed too... Just like kids should be alike to opt out of singing any song with which they are uncomfortable.
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Euphoric
by Bazinga! on Jun. 11, 2012 at 12:04 PM
1 mom liked this

 This

Quoting sherry132:

I think they should be allowed to opt out, but not forbidden for all. 

 

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