Politics & Policy

Our Star-Spangled Banner

(Bryan Busovicki/Dreamstime.com)
Two hundred years after the Battle of Baltimore, the flag still gives us chills.

My father took me to my first Miami Dolphins game in 1977, and I remember looking up at him as we stood to sing “The Star Spangled Banner.” Just as it is today, Miami back then was a city of enormous diversity, with many people like my father who had come from other nations and had their lives changed by America.

In that crowd, you could have found some people who loved salsa and merengue and others who preferred R&B. I’m sure some were even (inexplicably, I might add) fans of the Bee Gees and other disco acts of the ’70s. But in that moment, all of us there, representing every background imaginable, were united by our appreciation and respect for our national anthem. Through this song, we became “out of many, one.”

I’ve been to numerous sporting events since then — from the NFL to the MLB to peewee football — where our national anthem is sung before the competition begins. I’ve also watched on TV some of the most unforgettable renditions, including Whitney Houston’s powerful Super Bowl performance in 1991 and Marvin Gaye’s famous version at the NBA All-Star Game in 1983. And every time, as I look around the audience and see Americans standing with their caps removed, it still gives me chills.

In those moments, no one cares whether the people to their left or right are Republicans or Democrats, immigrants or native-born. No one even minds if they’re fans of the opposing team.

Instead, we’re reminded that we’re all Americans. We’re all proud of our heritage, grateful to those who died to ensure our freedom, and forever indebted to those who continue that fight today.

Our national anthem is a stirring reminder of our solidarity as a people. So as we mark the 200th anniversary of Francis Scott Key’s penning of “The Star Spangled Banner,” let us take this chance to reflect on the history and promise of our nation — on how the things that divide us as individuals will never be more powerful that what unites us as Americans.

— Marco Rubio represents Florida in the U.S. Senate.

Marco Rubio, the senior U.S. senator from Florida, is the chairman of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Fox News Anchor Shepard Smith Resigns

Fox News Channel's chief anchor, Shepard Smith, announced on air Friday that he would be resigning from his post after 23 years with the network. “This is my last newscast here,” said Smith. “Recently, I asked the company to allow me to leave Fox News. After requesting that I stay, they obliged.” He ... Read More
NR Webathon

Don’t Let Michael Mann Succeed

I  enjoyed the running joke of Jarndyce v. Jarndyce in the great Dickens novel Bleak House, back when I first read it. Little did I know that one day I and the magazine that I love would effectively be caught up in a version of that interminable case, courtesy of a litigious climate scientist with zero regard ... Read More
White House

What Is Impeachment For?

W hat is impeachment for? Seems like a simple question. Constitutionally speaking, it also appears to have a simple answer: to cite and remove from power a president guilty of wrongdoing. Aye, there’s the rub. What sort of wrongdoing warrants removal from power? I’d wager that the flames of ... Read More
Elections

Beto Proposes to Oppress Church with State

Beto O’Rourke’s presidential campaign is within the margin of error of non-existence, but in his failure he has found a purpose: expressing the Democratic id. His latest bid for left-wing love came at a CNN forum on gay rights, where he said that churches that oppose same-sex marriage should have to pay ... Read More