“The Star-Spangled Banner”: I don’t think it’s appropriate to play the US national anthem at professional sporting events, says Bruce Arena

"The Star-Spangled Banner": I don't think it's appropriate to play the US national anthem at professional sporting events, says Bruce Arena
Niki J. Layton
Written by Niki J. Layton

Speaking to ESPN Taylor Twelman, Arena said, “I think it puts people in awkward positions.

“We don’t use the national anthem in movie theaters and other events in Broadway, the United States, and I don’t think it’s appropriate to have a national anthem before a baseball game, the MLS game.”

Arena added: “You think about it in Major League Soccer. The players who stand on the field during the national anthem are a lot of international players, not even Americans.

“So why do we play the national anthem? With all due respect, I live in the greatest country in the world, but I think it’s inappropriate.”

‘I’m In Tears’

“The Star-Spangled Banner” What began as a poem called “The Defense of Fort McHenry”. It was written in 1812 by Francis Scott Key in the War of 1812. The stanzas describe the Battle of Baltimore as a days-long siege between British and American troops.

The poem is set to the tune “The Anacreontic Song”, composed by John Stafford Smith in the late 1700s. The song is linked to the Anacreontic Society, a tee musician and singer’s club named after the Greek poet Anacreon.

“The Star-Spangled Banner” was not originally adopted as the official anthem of the US until 1931, although it was already popular and used by many American companies.

“I’m tearful as a national team coach with the national anthem,” said Arena, a New England Revolution coach, but a coach for the US national soccer team on two separate occasions.

“It is an honor to represent the United States at World Cups and international competitions. I think playing the national anthem is clearly appropriate at those levels.

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“However, I question why we are playing the national anthem in professional sports events in our country.”


It is tradition to play “Star Spangled Banner” at sporting events 1918, When the live band played the song during the seventh inning of the first game of the World Series between the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox.

The country is at war and it is announced that baseball players will be brought into the army soon.

The song is said to be Unified and energized The Iciness Group.

The game took place in Chicago, but the Red Sox reflected on their opponents playing the song in consecutive games.

Before long, it was played at many sporting events and by the end of World War II, the NFL Commissioner Elmer Leyden The song is ordered to be played at every football game.


Colin Kaepernick This is not the first time that the national anthem has been the subject of a controversy over the anthem of the knee-jerk sporting event.
In 1954, general manager of the Baltimore Orioles Arthur Ehlers Fans who believe he disrespected the song by talking and laughing during the song.

Ariana said she supports the public’s right to kneel.

“Today I understand why people are kneeling,” he said. “We’ve seen it with women. We’ve seen it in the NFL and I think it’s appropriate if they are respectful.”

Speaking about his response to the Black Lives Matter movement, Arena said, “As an American, and as a White American, I am ashamed that there is this kind of racism in our country in 2020.

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“Some of these killings are not an ongoing threat. There is bias and racism and this is the time for people to step up and defend what is right.”

About the author

Niki J. Layton

Niki J. Layton

Niki J. Layton is a journalist who writes on politics, environment and human rights in South Asia.

For 15 years, she has written for several publications and websites including TIME, Harper's, Al Jazeera, The Caravan, The Hindu,, Outlook, The Wire, The New York Times, Foreign Policy, The Economic Times, Tehelka, and news channel CNN-IBN. She is an India correspondent for The Straits Times, Singapore.

Some of the awards she has received are the Red Cross Award for reporting on conflict, Mumbai press award for environmental reporting, and ILO award for writing on labour. Niki has a Masters in political journalism from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, New York

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