Salute Your Flag!

Last night my dad and I went to a Los Angeles Dodgers exhibition game against the Angels at Dodger Stadium. Well, as the announcer asked all to rise and remove their caps for the singing of the national anthem by some lady, I looked to the huge waving flag in center field. As I put my hand over my heart, she began singing. Pride welled up in my heart as I thought of those words: “Oh say can you see, by the dawn’s early light. What so proudly we held…” Then I glanced around.

What? What was this? Why weren’t some of these people saluting the flag? Why wasn’t their hand over their heart? “Whose broad stripes and bright stars were so gallantly gleaming…” That guy! Why is he eating peanuts! How rude! Do you know how many soldiers are overseas right now dying so you can eat peanuts at a baseball game in safety!? How dare he?

Of course, my blood was boiling. “And the rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air, gave proof through the night, that our flag was still there…” Even some of the baseball players who didn’t grow up in this country were saluting the flag! They realize the awesome privilege it is to live in this country.

“Oh say does that star-spangled banner yet wave…” Stupid peanut man. “O’er the land of the free…” Ungrateful citizens. “And the home of the brave.”

But as I glanced around during the end of the song, I saw a family sitting a few rows in front of us. The father and mother had their hands over their hearts and they were singing along, eyes fixed on the flag. The children, who were probably 9 and 6, were doing the same thing. Their eyes never left the flag. My heart swelled in pride and I remembered that there are good people left in this great country! God bless these citizens and God bless America!

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