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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

Respect for National Anthem?
Scott Morgan, Photographer
Burlington | IA | United States | Posted: 1:42 AM on 02.03.06
->> This is my first post, so forgive me if it's dumb or out of place.

Like most of you, I'm guessing, I've heard National Anthem played at games and events hundreds of times. I probably hear it several times a week. So, if I'm rushed for time, I don't feel too bad about setting up my lights and moving along the side of the crowd to get into position, so long as I'm not being too obvious or disrespectful. Do you think this is bad? Obviously, I wouldn't set up my lights in the middle of the floor in full view of everyone, just to be clear, but I'll do it out of the way where few if any people can see.

Frankly, I'm pretty sick of the song, and the more I hear it, the less significance it has towards being patriotic. Of course, fans and coaches don't hear it all the time like me, so it means more to them, which is probably why one of them said something to me about it at a game tonight. Just wondered what everyone else thought.

Scott
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Delane B. Rouse, Photographer, Photo Editor
Washington, DC & Seattle | WA | US | Posted: 2:28 AM on 02.03.06
->> Why can't you simply wait the 90 seonds it takes, show ample respect to the person singing the anthem (or recording) and then complete your set-up? Fans and coaches and players hear the song at every game...just like you.

While I will sometimes make images during the National Anthem, I don't think I would ever go so far as to say "I'm pretty sick of the song, and the more I hear it, the less significance it has towards being patriotic". I mean...its still the National Anthem.

I'm sure someone said something to you because your actions were "speaking louder than words" at the moment.
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Mike Doran, Photographer
Petaluma | CA | U.S.A. | Posted: 2:28 AM on 02.03.06
->> It only takes a couple of minutes.The National Anthem is part of our heritage.So my suggestion would be to stop what you are doing and show a little respect for your country.This also means that you should take off your hat and stand still.You will be respected by your peers.
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Louis Lopez, Photographer
Fontana | CA | USA | Posted: 2:32 AM on 02.03.06
->> Scott, your own words say a great deal about you.
"Frankly, I'm pretty sick of the song,"
Delane is right on point with his reply.
Pretty sad.
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Chris Machian, Photographer, Assistant
Omaha | NE | USA | Posted: 2:33 AM on 02.03.06
->> That is a good question.
If I am in an area visible to others, than yes, I stop out of respect for (among many other things) the other people around. It bothers them and sometimes draws attention to yourself.
But like Delane said, I do sometimes make images during the anthem. If I am running way behind, and not in an area visible to the public (i.e.in the ceiling or on an elevator) I keep going.
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Brian Valentin, Student/Intern
Genoa | IL | USA | Posted: 3:00 AM on 02.03.06
->> Interesting choice for a first post.

I'll admit I am a veritable newbie and have heard the anthem dozens , but not hundreds of times. I do, however, stop whatever I'm doing and take a moment to listen and kind of gather myself and get a feel for the space. The anthem is a great time to do this and if it's (in my case) a H.S. rivalry or college football game it's a great time to feel the electricity in the air. It certainly pumps me up and gets some adrenaline flowing.

I can only imagine what the feeling would be like for the Super Bowl or a major event.

I certainly stop what I'm doing and if I'm running behind setting up light's I just tell myself to make sure I'm a liitle bit earlier next time.

It isn't to much to ask to take a moment and reflect and realize how truly blessed we are to be doing something we love to do for a living.
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Dianna Russell, Photographer
Springfield | MO | USA | Posted: 3:04 AM on 02.03.06
->> Why wouldn't you be proud to show respect for the National Anthem?

It's not only representative of our heritage but, in case you forgot, we still have citizens of this country dying half a world away. And we will be, hopefully, hearing it a lot during the Olympics.

I am usually in place before the National Anthem begins, but if I'm not, I will stop walking and show respect by placing my hand over my heart during the presentation.

I'm sure you didn't mean to come across quite so negatively. I for one will never grow tired of hearing our National Anthem.

Dianna
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John Green, Photographer, Photo Editor
Northern | CA | USA | Posted: 3:31 AM on 02.03.06
->> These comments are pathetic, if you don't want to stand or take your hat off for the anthem, that is your right as an American. Have you people lost your mind
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George F. Lee, Photo Editor, Photographer
Honolulu | HI | USA | Posted: 3:53 AM on 02.03.06
->> There IS something to be said about ceremony! Here in Hawaii along with the national anthem everyone, and I mean everyone, stands and sings the state song "Hawai`i Pono`i" with the original Hawaiian lyrics.

Aloha
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David Saffran, Photographer
Staten Island | NY | USA | Posted: 3:59 AM on 02.03.06
->> How can any American be sick of the National Anthem. I listen to it at least 200 times a year and never get tired of it. I live in New York City, I watched the Towers fall on September 11, 2001, it is a sight I will never forget in my entire life. I was at the first baseball game in New York City after that and there wasnt a dry eye in Shea Stadium that night, from players, to fans and even photographers and TV camera men. I have to shoot some images of the Anthem singers every night I work, I take 4 pictures then stand for the rest of the song usually looking at fans and getting my mind set for the game. Maybe you should look around and see how many fans as well as players sing or reflect during that 90 seconds. It means alot to this country. Think about the person sitting in the handicap section who was injured in Desert Storm or Iraq, a fan standing who lost a loved one on Sept 11, or a fan that has a friend or loved one in Iraq now or a child that lost his or her parent to this war. I can guarantee the National Anthem means a lot to them.
Not a very good first post Scott.

I wonder if these people I did some work for are sick of the National Anthem.

http://www.salutevipheroes.com/
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Gabriel Hernandez, Photographer
Harlingen | TX | USA | Posted: 4:02 AM on 02.03.06
->> hahaha .... Im not registered to vote and I will probably never vote. I respect the anthem from our country or any other country, but that will not stop me from taking photos. Its like respecting someones religion while your taking photos of them. Your the photographer.... you make the choice. Im sure you will do the right thing for others and yourself. Be a human being, not just a photographer. Respect will get you what your looking for.
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Eric Jones, Photographer
Greenville | NC | USA | Posted: 4:04 AM on 02.03.06
->> I was at a college game and everyone stood for the National Anthem and I forgot to take my hat off. Well it was pretty quite right before it started and someone in the stands yelled "Take your hat off!" Well, not sure if he was talking to me or not but I slowly took my hat off and didn't dare turn around. I kinda did that "oops...sorry" look. I enjoy the song, sometimes it will give me goose bumps towards the end if you have that right singer hitting the notes and it's awesome when you have a few jets flying by at the end as well. Play Ball!!!
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David Saffran, Photographer
Staten Island | NY | USA | Posted: 4:05 AM on 02.03.06
->> Scott,

Look at your own Member Gallery picture # 5.

http://www.sportsshooter.com/port_popup.html?mem_id=5156&i_id=378307

Tell me these three ladies would get sick of the National Anthem.
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Greg Ferguson, Photographer
Scottsdale | Az | USA | Posted: 4:17 AM on 02.03.06
->> In the world I shoot like shooting in you're expected to stop what you're doing, take off your hat, and stand respectfully during the National Anthem, and the following invocation. Failure to do so will be pointed out to you quickly and could have long-term repercussions to business because they're a very traditional and conservative group.

Yes, I'll occasionally take some shots, but I do it discretely or as discretely as anyone could in front of a grandstand of people.

I get to hear it sung by people who can't sing and make me cringe, by very accomplished singers, and many different renditions from various country singers. And, often I'll sing along because it means something to me to have the freedom to shoot what I like.

As much as I don't like some of what goes on with our politicians in this country, I'm very happy and proud to live here, to be raising my kids here, and to know we have freedoms that many people in other nations would love to have.

Whether you like the song or not isn't the point. I stand and take my hat off in memory of those who died to give us the freedoms to disagree with our politicians. They've paid a price that deserves being remembered and honored and the song just reminds me and gives me time to pause and reflect.
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
New England | | USA | Posted: 6:10 AM on 02.03.06
->> When I was still shooting a lot of sports a number of my clients were pro and NCAA D1 sports teams and/or leagues. While shooting for these clients I had to shoot during the National Anthem, shoot players, fan features and of course shoot the person singing the National Anthem. There are ways to do your job while showing respect for the Anthem.
1) Take your hat off
2) Don't move quickly and in an obvious manner
3) Try and stay below people's line of sight
4) Don't figet with your gear for no reason
5) If you are not shooting don't start setting up lights
6) Just be respectful while doing your job, know what you should and should not be doing during the Anthem.

The National Anthem is not a song I am sick of. I have heard it thousands of times. Over a four year contract shooting for an NCAA D1 university, which had 20+ sports teams, I probably heard it 3 or 4 times a week from late fall to early spring. Throw in covering MLB, NFL, MLL, AFL, MLS, etc games on a regular basis I probably heard it 250+ times a year I never got sick of hearing my country's National Anthem.

When I have shot sports outside the US I am always very careful to show respect during the National Anthem of whatever country's Anthem was being played.

My advice is this. Stand Up, Take Off Your Hat, Make Eye Contact With The Flag for EVERY Game You Shoot In The Next Week. It may just change your perspective.
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Steven E. Frischling, Photographer
New England | | USA | Posted: 6:22 AM on 02.03.06
->> John:

It is everyone's right to not show respect during the National Anthem. The First Amendment makes it clear that we have a choice.

I am a very strong believer in the First Amendment, I think it needs to be enforced more.........I'll go so far as to say I personally don't like "God" being in the Pledge of Allegiance It creates a problem with separation of church and state. Having to say the Pledge of Allegiance with the word "God" is forcing values on children growing up in atheist homes, or people who chose to live without a belief in God. It is anyone's absolute right to not believe in God.

I disagree with swearing a bible in court, or needing to swear your truth before God in court. It, again, is a violation of church and state.

While I have religion, and a strong belief in God, I fully understand that my views are just that....my views. My views should not be forced on someone else by me, my government or anyone else.


..........BUT as an American I also believe in showing respect for not only my country, even when I disagree with my government, but those serving my country. I think the National Anthem can be viewed as a was of supporting those away from their homes, their families, their lives, serving their duty. Even if you or I dialer with the political implications and global implications of those serving, they are following orders and have stepped up to the plate risking their lives in the service of their nation.

If nothing else, respect the National Anthem to show some respect for those serving your country. There are a number of servicemen on SportsShooter and I think we should be proud of what them, even if we are not proud of what our government has them involved in.
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Seh Suan Ngoh, Photographer
Singapore | SG | Singapore | Posted: 6:35 AM on 02.03.06
->> Regardless of what's happening, you can still opt to stand still for that short moment. It doesn't mean though, you cannot get your fingers on standby for something that might just crop up, and is shot-worthy. A moment of respect, do engage yourself as part of the audience, with a different role.

That's what I think, as a citizen of another small country.
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Monty Rand, Photographer
Bangor | ME | USA | Posted: 6:47 AM on 02.03.06
->> I played HS hockey and our coach used to make us stand still during the anthem. If you moved you didn't skate. We had to wait until it was completely over before we moved. To this day I do the same thing. I stop whatever I'm doing remove my hat and don't move a muscle until it's completely over. Funny how some things stay with you years later.
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Dick Van Nostrand, Photographer
Bay City | MI | USA | Posted: 7:12 AM on 02.03.06
->> I've always tried to arrive a few minutes early at a game so I can get my lights in place before the national anthem. I feel that arriving at a basketball game with a large light case and several cameras makes me the center of attention, like it or not. Like Steven said so well, I have respect for my country and its people and since people judge me, fairly or unfairly, by my conduct I act in a respectful manner. It's the same respect that I practiced during my long career that granted me access to many situations that police and firefighters controlled access to. They had observed my conduct on many occasions and trusted me to be professional. Since I don't even sing in the shower because of my lousy voice, singing the national anthem is an absolute no-no.
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Dan Neri, Photographer
Franklin Square | NY | USA | Posted: 8:26 AM on 02.03.06
->> Scott,

Imagine for that few minutes when the Anthem is playing about living in a country where you would not be able to do what you love. Imagine being a soldier serving overseas, not being able to see your family for extended periods of time. Imagine watching thousands of your neighbors die at the hands of terrorists.

Thank God I live in the US and get to hear that song everytime I am at an event. I love the fact that Yankees still play "God Bless America" during their home games.

You have photos of the Space Shuttle, teary-eyed relatives of a soldier, and hurricane victims in LA. All things that, although tragic, brought the country together. You don't seem to mind covering those events, how about showing some respect for those whose tragesy you have to photograph?

Sometimes you do more for people by doing nothing for the few brief minutes that the song is played.

Personally, I ask people to remove their hats, be quiet, and show respect when they are close to me and won't stop talking during the Anthem. You may not want to respect the song or the flag, but try respecting the people who actually appreciate the Anthem and the country they love.
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Scott Foley, Photographer
Southwest Asia | SWA | | Posted: 8:29 AM on 02.03.06
->> Scott –

Unfortunately, I was not surprised to read your post. I think it is a direct reflection of how our country has changed and how many among us have forgotten about the great sacrifices our ancestors have made in building our great country. Freedom is and will never be free!

I write this post thousands of miles away from my wife and family, as I serve my country for a year overseas in Southwest Asia. This is my third time away from my family to defend our great nation's values and freedoms that so often seem to be taken for granted. I acknowledge our country is not perfect, we certainly have our issues. However, in my sixteen years of service, I have traveled all over the world and I always have sanctity in knowing that my current conditions are only temporary, that the poverty and social injustice that I witness is not my home and certainly not what my family is subjected too. I feel lucky. Lately, when I hear the national anthem it is not while attending a sporting event but rather in attendance of a memorial service for one of my fellow comrades in arms, and as often as we hear it, it never, ever, gets old!

As for proper protocol during the national anthem...arrive early and take care of your business! During the national anthem if you are required to take shots, I recommend you follow the advice of your fellow SSers above. If you do not have to take shots, remove your hat and cover your heart, face the flag, and spend that 90 seconds reflecting how fortunate you really are. I agree with Fish, this may change your perspective and hopefully, you will feel as lucky as I do to be called an American and more importantly, you will realize the importance of paying proper respect to our Nation's anthem.

Very Respectfully
Scott
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Sean D. Elliot, Photographer
Norwich | CT | USA | Posted: 8:54 AM on 02.03.06
->> Let's see, the anthem. I'm sick of it. It's jingoistic, trite, the tune is annoying, it's rare to actually hear it sung well, I have major issues with the country it represents at this time ...

yet I still remove my hat if I'm wearing one, and only even take photos if there's soemthing anthem related, the singer, a general patriotic air to the event, that compells me, otherwise I stand and face the flag.

My general guide has already been echoed. If I were in another country I would show respect to their anthem, so I show respect in this country.

Scott, if you're so pressed for time that the 2 minutes the anthem takes leaves you in trouble, you need to work on time management before you even worry about patriotism.
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Greg Ferguson, Photographer
Scottsdale | Az | USA | Posted: 9:24 AM on 02.03.06
->> I'd be interested in the comments of some of our members who've been embedded with our troops as they're fighting.

In particular I'd like to hear a few words from Jack Gruber. Jack spoke at the last SS get together about being there during fire-fights, and how it was to return, then find out one of the soldiers he'd worked around being killed days before that solder's tour was up.

Let's hear from some of the guys who were shooting the tsunami disaster; How did it feel to return?
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Randy Janoski, Photographer
Washington DC & Nashville | TN | USA | Posted: 9:33 AM on 02.03.06
->> Let me pass on some advice from one of America's first great educators and statesmen.

"Manners easily and rapidly mature into morals." --Horace Mann
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Mark Perlstein, Photographer
Plano | TX | USA | Posted: 10:03 AM on 02.03.06
->> Wow. I can't believe some of the things that are said in this international forum. Some have no clue how many potential clients look at this site. I research this site often before hiring a photographer, and keep notes on what I see and read. We are not only judged by our photography, but also how we look and what we say. I am watching all of you. Haha.
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Marc F. Henning, Photographer
Bentonville | AR | USA | Posted: 10:13 AM on 02.03.06
->> not showing respect for our country's flag and national anthem is the same as showing up to a funeral wearing shorts and a t-shirt. people are going to notice and will take note of your lack of respect. i fully endorse Fish's six points to follow in his first response above.

if you don't care to stand and face the flag in respect during your own time, that's great and it is your right. but if you're working as a professional, and you care about the image of the industry you're working in, then show the respect everyone else in the venue is showing. it'll go a long way in preserving your "business" image. of course if you have photos to take at the moment, take them and then resume the position until the anthem ends. there's nothing wrong with taking photos during the anthem because that's your job.

i doubt Donald Miralle got up and proceeded to dig through his camera bag as the national anthem played on after he shot his clip-winning image of the Marines holding up the American flag during the Holiday Bowl.

marc
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Mike Ullery, Photographer
Troy | OH | USA | Posted: 10:21 AM on 02.03.06
->> So, John...maybe you should be thankful, and more respectful, to live in a country where you have the right to make comments like the one in your post. I respect your right to your opinion, but remember this...we have men and women fighting and dying daily in a country where if you make a comment like the one in your post, you could fully expect to be shot dead for the comment. And they would probably kill the rest of your family just to make the point that you have no right to an opinion that differs from that of the vocal, and violent, minority.

You have the right to not remove your cap and show respect. But far too many Americans have fought and died protecting that right for any of us to ignore the National Anthem or fail to honor their sacrifice by showing proper respect to our Flag and our Country.

Respectfully,
Mike

And for the record: God Bless America!
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Tom Ervin, Photographer
Palm Beach | FL | USA | Posted: 10:37 AM on 02.03.06
->> Scott Morgan seems okay to me. Is he wrong ? I don't think so. It might make him look unAmerican to some people.Most people who show their respect to the National Anthem do not know the words. Before you respect shouldn't you know something about it.

Do I try to show my respect . I try. I put my hand over my heart during the anthem when I can. Is it a shallow respect? Yes, because I don't know the words.

The Star Spanngled Banner is a 4 verse a poem written by a poet named Frances Scott Key in 1814. The tune was later added by someone else.

It became out national anthem and passed by congress in 1931.

How many of us has shown true respect by an action of substance and not just gesture to the Americans who haven fallen? I have to say I'm guilty.
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Matthias Krause, Photographer
Brooklyn | NY | USA | Posted: 10:39 AM on 02.03.06
->> *disclaimer: I do stand still and remove my hat when the American Anthem is playing at a game I shoot just out of respect for the people who do the same and feel strongly about it* End*
This discussion is SO american. Nobody in Germany would ever think of playing the national anthem at any sports event other than when national teams are involved. I don't know why so many Americans feel that they have to wear their patriotism on their sleeves. It comes across as being very awkward in many parts of the world. Just because they don't do it very day in Germany (for example) doesn't mean that they love their country any less.
Mark P.: If that are your criteria for hiring somebody, please cross me off your list.
Best,
Matthias
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Marc F. Henning, Photographer
Bentonville | AR | USA | Posted: 10:53 AM on 02.03.06
->> it's a pretty sad reflection on our modern society if someone can grow up in this country and not know the words to the national anthem but still be able to sing songs verbatim from such "heralded" Americans as Eminem, Brittany Spears, 50 Cent or other popular "artists" whose crap is seeping out into the airways and onto store shelves these days.

i don't care what side of the fence you're from politically. we all should be damned proud to be living in a country that protects even the most disloyal members of its society. i know immigrants to this country who show more love and loyalty than some Americans out there. they're in a much better place now and are appreciative of the freedoms and basic services we all take for granted on a daily basis.

marc
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Rick Burnham, Photographer
Enfield | CT | USA | Posted: 10:55 AM on 02.03.06
->> If you're sick of the anthem I suggest you read this book. "Faith of my Fathers" by John McCain. Yes that John McCain. And concentrate hard on the parts where he talks about how the POW's sewed American flags into their shirts so the Viet Cong couldn't find them. They did this because of how they felt about their country.

Do you know what happened to them when the VC found those flags? They beat them even worse then they had been beaten the last time.

Maybe then you will have a true understanding of the anthem and all the men and women like our own Scott Foley who stand for it everyday and each night so people have the freedom to run their mouths and have no fear of doing it.
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Will Powers, Photographer
Phoenix | AZ | USA | Posted: 11:06 AM on 02.03.06
->> I'd like to hijack the thread. Does standing up and putting your hand over your heart and facing the flag during the playing of God Bless America show disrespect for the Star Spangled Banner? I wonder if it diminishes the value. Will we soon be standing with our hands over our hearts to Born in the USA?
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Alan Stewart, Photographer
Corydon | IN | USA | Posted: 11:09 AM on 02.03.06
->> Scott, I remember a time when I was somewhat like you. I stood for the national anthem, but it really just didn't do a whole lot for me. I'd take off my hat and look around, anxiously awaiting the final note so I could get back to what I was doing. You know...other more important things need to be done.

Then Sept. 11 happened.

High school sporting events here in Indiana were put on hold. Like most Americans, all I did was sit and watch CNN and become absorbed by the tragedy. By Friday, HS football was back and I remember thinking to myself, "I don't want to be here."

That changed with the playing of The Star Spangled Banner before the game. It was the first time I'd heard it since the towers fell.

A few of the notes were off key. A couple of the words were wrong. But at that time...at that moment...all I could do was cry as the song was the most beautiful that I'd ever heard.

I thought about the children who had lost their husband or wife; their mommy or their daddy. I thought about the heroes who went up as everyone else was coming down. I thought about the people who would NEVER hear that song again.

By the time the lyrics came to, "And the rockets red glare," a soft breeze lifted the flag and stretched it out.

As the Stars and Stripes gently stroked in the wind, it hit me that there are many who gave their life defending that flag and that song and what they stand for. The very LEAST I could do is show respect.

Scott, as an American you really do have every right to do whatever you wish during the playing of our national anthem.

But please ask yourself: Is 90 seconds really too long for you to pause from what you are doing to show respect to our nation, or for others around you?
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Will Powers, Photographer
Phoenix | AZ | USA | Posted: 11:28 AM on 02.03.06
->> Now to return you to the thread. I agree the writers above that have said that the freedom to not be forced to stand up and put your hand over your heart, or salute, or bow to the east is a great privledge we as Americans have been given. Thanks to all those who have fought for the right to allow me to burn the flag if I so desire.
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Mike Last, Student/Intern, Photographer
London | Ontario | Canada | Posted: 11:40 AM on 02.03.06
->> If you're sick of the anthem, I suggest moving countries. Canada could be a change of anthem for you... or going to Europe would get rid of the anthems all together for you.

As a photographer or a paying ticket holder at an event, I will stand, take off my hat and sing the anthem. It just seems right to me.
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Jim Colburn, Photographer
Omaha | NE | USA | Posted: 11:44 AM on 02.03.06
->> 'Scott, your own words say a great deal about you.
"Frankly, I'm pretty sick of the song,"'

It says that he's being honest. Americans generally hold their flag to a much higher level than is necessary. We are even supposed to pledge allegience to a flag, not our country, its flag, and that's always bugged me. The anthem should be something like "America the Beautiful".

Given all that Scott ought to stand still for the playing of the anthem if even to avoid some redneck chucking a full cup of beer at him later in the game.
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John Lee, Photographer
San Francisco | CA | USA | Posted: 11:45 AM on 02.03.06
->> i'm typing this as a "w"-hating leftie pinko who lives in a predominatly militant lesbian neighborhood in san francisco.

with that said, i still will stop for the 90 seconds and stand. if not for the respect for the country that we've all paid lots of tax dollars to (half a trillion of which is going to fund iraq and afghanistan), but for the people who DO find the little tune kinda nice.

it's only 90-seconds.
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Jim Colburn, Photographer
Omaha | NE | USA | Posted: 11:52 AM on 02.03.06
->> "Im not registered to vote and I will probably never vote."

Then don't EVER complain about ANYTHING that the government of the day says or does. Don't whine about taxes, health care, wars, what's on TV, the price of gasoline, Internet privacy, the influence (or lack of same) of religion in the country or whether or not it's okay for you to take pictures of that person over there.

Maybe you're young or maybe you're stupid, or maybe both, but not voting is one of the single dumbest things you can do. When blacks in South Africa finally got the vote (after 50 years or so) some of them stood in line, in the burning sun, at polling stations for TWO DAYS in order to cast the first vote of their lives.

And you can't take the 15 minutes it'd take you to vote in an American election?
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Tim Huntington, Photographer
Santa Clara | CA | USA | Posted: 11:53 AM on 02.03.06
->> Growing up in the UK, I have a similar view on all this to Matthias above (and a similar disclaimer - I'm very much a "when in Rome" kind of person).

The UK National Anthem was usually only ever played at international events and would typically be accompanied later by the anthem of the winner of the event too, so when I moved to the states I was very surprised to find the anthem played as often as it is (and also surprised to see how much respect it garnered from those in ear shot of the anthem).

There's an interesting article (that I presume is accurate as I'd heard a similar story before) on the history of the US anthem at US sporting events at this url
http://www.poppolitics.com/articles/printerfriendly/2003-02-28-flagprotest....

Tim
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Mark Smith, Photographer
Elk City | OK | USA | Posted: 11:58 AM on 02.03.06
->> I don't respect the National Anthem.
I respect my country. I respect the Americans, who over the last few centuries gave their lives so that I can do simple things, like have this discussion, and bigger things, like own my business and pursue a life of my choosing. I respect the men who wrote the constitution and I respect the ideals they stood for, ideals that have done more for the good of mankind than can be expressed in short order. When the Anthem is played, I get one more opportunity to reflect on these things and remember the sacrifices made so that, among so many other things, we can gather in cordial spirit and watch a game. I honestly don't give a good damn that others might see this as awkward, or that it is percieved as "wearing my patriotism on my sleeve". Just as, I don't believe that if you don't play your anthem everyday, you love your country any less. Part of our culture, part of our national fabric is this ceremony of our anthem. If you don't want to express your respect, or if you don't have any respect, for all that I've mentioned, well, that is your right; a right that was purchased with the blood, toil and life of men and women who are no longer afforded that choice.
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Jack Gruber, Photographer
San Francisco | CA | USA | Posted: 12:15 PM on 02.03.06
->> The one thing that I try to always do as a journalist is to blend in and make people forget I am there. That usually means doing what ever I can do not draw attention to myself. If that means standing for the anthem if it is the US, Canadian or Iraqi, I am going to do what I think will be most appropriate.

There are times stuck in the middle of a photowell at an event where standing during an anthem would block other working photographers views and I stay seated no matter how out of place fans or others may think it is. It all comes down to showing respect for the people you are covering and working around. Simple as that.

If you feel politically motivated not to stand for the anthem in the US, that is your right. I would fully respect anyone's right to express their viewpoint.

Personally, I think it is pretty amazing thing to stand at a high school football game or the Super Bowl and hear those words in any venue. For me, it is just a nice reminder of just how lucky we all are to live the lives we want in this country for better or worse, in good times and bad.
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Thierry Gourjon, Photographer
New York | NY | USA | Posted: 12:18 PM on 02.03.06
->> I won't retype Matthias’ disclaimer but I abide by the same rule. I also agree with him that this is a debate that would only take place in the US as I don't know of any country, at least in Europe where I lived for 20 plus years, where the National Anthem is played before a game that does not involve the national team or isn’t an international competition.
Sport is nothing more than a form of mass entertainment and a big business, so isn’t it trivializing and to some extend cheapening the National Anthem to play it at such venues as a regular baseball /basketball (etc…) game instead of only using it for occasions that truly call for it and are a genuine reflection of its meaning and symbolism ? : 4th of July, Memorial Day, Veteran’s Day…
As Matthias stated is does come across as very awkward and puzzling in many parts of the world.
Mark P: Please cross me off your list too.
T.
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Peter Aiken, Photographer
Manhattan | KS | USA | Posted: 12:37 PM on 02.03.06
->> For all of those who think it such a pain in the A@$ to stand and listen to the National Anthem and pay their respects to the flag of the United States, then think of all the Americans who have given their lives fighting and defending this country, so you can live in a country where you can make a living working as a photographer and cover sporting events.
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Isaac Davis, Photographer
Saugus | CA | USA | Posted: 12:39 PM on 02.03.06
->> Jim,
Not to be critical here, but the pledge isn't just about the flag.

I pledge allegiance to the Flag
of the United States of America,
and to the Republic for which it stands:
one Nation under God, indivisible,
With Liberty and Justice for all.
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wally raynes, Photographer
Kaiserslautern | ge | Germany | Posted: 12:42 PM on 02.03.06
->> Well, guys, as a Brit in Germany who works for the US military, I can tell you the US National Athem gives me goose pimples everytime I hear it, hundreds of occasions during the last 20 odd years. It's not the catchy tune that gives me the tingles, but what it represents.

A couple of years ago, at a conference in Southern Germany, the US National Anthem was played directly after a very moving solo bagpipe playing 'Abide with Me', that combination nearly brought the house down... It was, well, it was beautiful.

A couple of months ago, at a high school football championship, a young lady sang the Anthem with such emotion and passion, it too was just beautiful.

Nah, I can't get enough of that feeling that stirs inside...
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Matthew Rosenberg, Photographer
Philadelphia | PA | United States | Posted: 12:47 PM on 02.03.06
->> This thread is worse than Crossfire was on CNN. In the words of Jon Stewart, "Stop!." Please?
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Kenny Felt, Photographer, Assistant
Uniontown | KS | USA | Posted: 12:57 PM on 02.03.06
->> This guy didn't ask what other people thought about the national anthem. He asked members what they thought about setting up his lights. Not about what the national anthem should mean to him. Not about what others thought about the national anthem. He did not say what he said to offend anyone. It's his personal right to not like the national anthem. He asked a question he hoped to receive a professional answer about and for the most part all he has received is ridicule.
Just as a side note, I don't agree with him on his stance. Just stop and think where he might be coming from before you pummel the guy for his thoughts.
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Chris Machian, Photographer, Assistant
Omaha | NE | USA | Posted: 12:58 PM on 02.03.06
->> Speaking of respect, how about respectful difference of opinion?

Reminds of the old saying (and I may be off on the wording slightly):
"While I may disagree withy our opinion, I will fight to the death for your right to express it"
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Crystal Chatham, Photographer
La Quinta | CA | United States | Posted: 1:10 PM on 02.03.06
->> Hearing the National Anthem multiple times a week is something I have always seen as a privelege and one of the perks of covering sports.

As for it "getting old" - there are so many renditions of the Star Spangled Banner and everyone who performs it adds their own flair - vocal or instrumental. We have a unique opportunity to become connoisseurs of the song and notice nuances of each performance.

No one can make you feel or be patriotic. No one can make you stop what you're doing during the Anthem. Maybe, though, the next time you hear the National Anthem smile and think about how cool it is to even have the choice of what to do during it.

Crystal
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Joshua Brown, Photographer
Clyde | NC | USA | Posted: 1:12 PM on 02.03.06
->> Personally, I think that it is inappropriate to mark Scott's message as "inappropriate." IMHO, nothing rude, racist or blatantly disrespectful has been said. So he's tired of hearing a song and wants to work when it's being played. That's his opinion and right, and he's entitled to it. Let the man be.
-Josh
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Mark Smith, Photographer
Elk City | OK | USA | Posted: 1:44 PM on 02.03.06
->> Scott, I'm guessing your post was tossed out casually and that you weren't trying to attach great ideological significance to it. The subject matter, though, is charged with a great deal of emotion and I'm afraid you took the brunt of it. I think some of us, me included, may have piled on a bit and personally, I'd like to apoligize.
Welcome to our community, and don't let this train wreck of a thread stop you from joining in.
Cheers,
Mark
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