“Oh say can you see, by the dawn’s early light…” Wait! Stop! Hold the needle right there! We interrupt your regularly scheduled patriotic rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner” this Fourth of July to make the case for a new American national anthem — one that does a better job of being an actual national anthem.
It first occurred to me while watching a flat track dirt race (think NASCAR but messier) that ours really isn’t the right genre. Our anthem is a song about a battle in the War of 1812 and a flag and a new nation’s will to fight on against long odds. Most national anthems are songs about the nation and the people.