JR'S Free Thought Pages
            No Gods  ~ No Masters   



                                  National Anthems and Sports


Why do we insist on playing the national anthem at sporting events? As long as I can remember Iíve disliked listening to patriotic platitudes such as national anthems and Iíve often pondered over how and why a mindless ritual such as this ever got started. Playing Oh Canada at an NHL hockey game where the majority of the players are now from countries outside Canada seems to make even less sense. Why not play Led Zeppelinís Stairway to Heaven?

Like so many other banalities in life, we often behave like unthinking automatons and participate in activities such as this because thatís what weíve always done. No one seems to have sufficient curiosity or scepticism these days to ask: ďWhat the hellís the point?Ē I still vividly recall as a University student forty years ago not standing up for the playing of God Save the Queen after they closed the bar at a Canadian Legion on the Sunshine Coast. Consequently, I came within a whisker of having my lights put out by some well-oiled red necked loggers. The situation deteriorated even further when I attempted to explain my inaction by informing them that I neither believed in God nor the Monarchy and that they ought to respect my freedom of thought. Iím older and more prudent now but have not changed my views on such sanctimonious observances one whit.


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