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Thread: Standing for "God Bless America"??

  1. #1
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    Standing for "God Bless America"??

    Last night, I went to a great concert provided by our local symphony. It was a part of our city's Red, White & Blue Festival. The symphony is fortunate to be conducted by an incredible conductor who was formerly from the USSR but became an American citizen about 15 years ago. Even with his extremely strong Russian accent, I think he wears his heart on his sleeve when it comes to patriotism! He seems to have more patriotism in his little finger than a lot of people seem to pretend to possess. He LOVES this country and is so thankful for being here. He's pretty darned amazing....I love watching him conduct the orchestra! He's definitely a gift to this area.

    BUT....I wondered about one song in particular. When the orchestra played "God Bless America", people stood up. Now, I know that people stand for the National Anthem, but when did "God Bless America" become a standing event?? I think it was after the event ended that the woofing/barking man sitting behind us made a comment to his fellow attendees, "did you see how I made everyone stand up? I was the first one standing" that I really started wondering about this new(?) tradition(???)

    I do love the song...but why now stand at "My Country Tis of Thee" or any of the other traditionally patriotic songs?

    Is this just a southern thing?

  2. #2
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    I think people were just swept away with the spirit of the concert? It was probably a group psychology thing. If a few people stood up there were probably others who thought "wait, do we stand up for this? Not sure. Better stand up." And soon everyone was standing.

    I mean, did you stand up?
    Barbara

    Nutella is love! - 9yr old ds

  3. #3
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    Not just a Southern thing, no, but a Yankee thing as well.

    It's been played at Yankee Stadium (and possibly others) during the 7th inning stretch for years now, the Kate Smith version, and everyone has always stood, along with considerable flag displaying, but I think that part has been an addition since 9/11.

    Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by newtricks
    I mean, did you stand up?
    Yep...otherwise, I would have been likely the only person sitting. I didn't see a reason to remain sitting but wondered what prompted the standing.

    ....Maybe they picked it up at a Yankees game.

  5. #5
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    Well anything that happens at a Yankees game should just be discounted...

    Last night at the Boston Pops Esplanade concert which was televised nationwide, we did not stand for God Bless America. It was part of a Patriotic Sing-along medley.

    Loren
    The term "working mother" is redundant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gracie
    Well anything that happens at a Yankees game should just be discounted...

    Last night at the Boston Pops Esplanade concert which was televised nationwide, we did not stand for God Bless America.
    Because people in Boston ain't got no couth!

    Now that I think of it, I believe the public announcer at the Stadium asks the crowd to stand to honor our service men, but I'm not sure if that's recent or not.

    Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobmark226
    Now that I think of it, I believe the public announcer at the Stadium asks the crowd to stand to honor our service men, but I'm not sure if that's recent or not.
    Bob - At Minutemaid Park ( which I affectionately refer to as the Juice Box ) I believe the Astro's announcer says the same thing - to stand in honor of our service men or at least something really similar. I don't remember when it started...but every 7th inning stretch now is God Bless America, followed by Take Me Out to the Ballgame, followed by Deep in the Heart of Texas
    Terri _A
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    Read my ramblings about food and my nutty life on A Girl in the South!

  8. #8
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    They used to stand at the Philadelphia Flyers' games when Kate Smith sang "God Bless America!" Some people refer to this song as more expressive of their patriotism than the "Star Spangled Banner." When you read the lyrics (which everyone knows anyway), it's understandable.
    God Bless America
    God Bless America,
    Land that I love.
    Stand beside her, and guide her
    Thru the night with a light from above.
    From the mountains, to the prairies,
    To the oceans, white with foam
    God bless America, My home sweet home.

    Star Spangled Banner
    O say, can you see, by the dawn's early light,
    What so proudly we hail'd at the twilight's last gleaming?
    Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro' the perilous fight,
    O'er the ramparts we watch'd, were so gallantly streaming?
    And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
    Gave proof thro' the night that our flag was still there.
    O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
    O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

    "If you aren't living on the edge, you're taking up too much space."

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gracie
    Well anything that happens at a Yankees game should just be discounted...
    I wanted to say the same thing. Thanks for piping up for me. They sang "God Bless America" in the middle of a patriotic sing-along at our concert too. Some day, I REALLY want to make it to the Boston Pops! As soon as I made it home from our concert, I turned on the TV to see a mini version of the Pops. They showed about 30 minutes of the concert on our CBS channel...and then about 30 minutes uninterrupted fireworks.

    ETV had the concert in DC. For all those TV producers out there who care about my opinion...I would MUCH MUCH MUCH rather see the entire Pops concert and fireworks without the advertisements and maybe have the DC concert on the CBS station. ETV used to show the Pops several years ago. I have no idea why it moved to CBS. Move it back!!!

  10. #10
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    I must be in a weird mood, Melanie, but I simply *have* to know more about the Woofing/Barking man

    Sheila

  11. #11
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    That's how my son described them (son is 22 so not a young thing.) The folks behind us were doing those sort of "cheers" type things you would expect at a ballgame...not a concert to celebrate the 4th of July. "Whooowoowoo". "Amen!" "Way to go" Heck, I can't figure out which letters to use to spell their insane sounds and comments. Definitely more ballgame/NASCAR than symphonic orchestra.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Melman
    Some day, I REALLY want to make it to the Boston Pops! As soon as I made it home from our concert, I turned on the TV to see a mini version of the Pops. They showed about 30 minutes of the concert on our CBS channel...and then about 30 minutes uninterrupted fireworks. !
    Well time your next New England visit for the 4th! We'll do the whole experience - get there by 7 am, get a spot to see the stage, and reserve a spot by the water for the fireworks.

    Unfortunately people don't realize that you can't watch the concert and see the fireworks without moving. You have to get there prior to 9 am to get in to the area to see the concert and hang out until 8:30 pm when it starts but if you don't have enough people with you to also save a spot on the water for the fireworks, you're out of luck. Too many very large trees.

    Loren
    The term "working mother" is redundant.

  13. #13
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    didn't bump for some reason
    The term "working mother" is redundant.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobmark226
    Because people in Boston ain't got no couth!

    Now that I think of it, I believe the public announcer at the Stadium asks the crowd to stand to honor our service men, but I'm not sure if that's recent or not.

    Bob
    But I thought you were a Red Sox fan!

    Loren
    The term "working mother" is redundant.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gracie
    Unfortunately people don't realize that you can't watch the concert and see the fireworks without moving.
    Many moons ago* I got laid off from a job of fifteen years at the end of June, so rather than mourn, I booked a week in Boston for the week of the Fourth. I did a week of Fenway, the Chowder Festival, but on the Fourth itself because I was alone, I didn't feel comfortable going down there. As it happened my hotel room overlooked the festivies, so I put on the TV for the concert and had a spectacular view of the fireworks out my window, all with no crowds and no bugs.

    I don't believe I stood for God Bless America, but I'm sure I poured another glass of wine and toasted it instead!

    Bob
    *Boston Market was still Boston Chicken and only in Boston.
    Last edited by bobmark226; 07-05-2006 at 01:49 PM.

  16. #16
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    Now *THAT* sounds like a plan....Boston on the 4th....grabbing a space early in the morning for the concert...having another space staked out on the river for the fireworks...and toasting the whole evening with a glass or wine...or two...or whatever fits the day. (I suspect LOTS and LOTS of water is better.)

    If I can ever work that out, heck, I'll stand for ANY of the songs!!!!!!

  17. #17

    Talking

    I did some internet searching and there is no requirement to stand for "God Bless America". Personally I think standing while it's playing is the right thing to do even if it's not our National Anthem. It honors America and so that is enough for me to stand when it's played.

  18. #18
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    But how about "American the Beautiful", "My Country 'tis of Thee", "The Battle Hymn of the Republic", and why not "Yankee Doodle Dandy"???? We sang ALL those songs along with about a half dozen others. We did not stand for all the songs...only this one. And, yes, I do really like "God Bless America". I just wondered why.

    I had the same sort of question in my mind a while back regarding a different tradition with the National Anthem. I know that's a song where people stand and hats always come off the top of heads. I wondered why some people put a hand over their heart while it played. I never learned that in school...that was something people did when they said the Pledge of Allegiance. I finally figured out that evidently Boy Scouts (and Girl Scouts??) are taught to do that....and possibly something to do with the military?? (Instead of saluting???) I don't question that practice any longer. I just wanted to be sure I hadn't missed a "rule change" or something.

    Ditto on standing for this particular song. I wanted to be sure we didn't have a new "standard procedure" that I missed.

  19. #19

    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by Melman
    But how about "American the Beautiful", "My Country 'tis of Thee", "The Battle Hymn of the Republic", and why not "Yankee Doodle Dandy"???? We sang ALL those songs along with about a half dozen others. We did not stand for all the songs...only this one. And, yes, I do really like "God Bless America". I just wondered why.

    I had the same sort of question in my mind a while back regarding a different tradition with the National Anthem. I know that's a song where people stand and hats always come off the top of heads. I wondered why some people put a hand over their heart while it played. I never learned that in school...that was something people did when they said the Pledge of Allegiance. I finally figured out that evidently Boy Scouts (and Girl Scouts??) are taught to do that....and possibly something to do with the military?? (Instead of saluting???) I don't question that practice any longer. I just wanted to be sure I hadn't missed a "rule change" or something.

    Ditto on standing for this particular song. I wanted to be sure we didn't have a new "standard procedure" that I missed.
    I think people stand during God Bless America because there have been movements over the years to make it the National Anthem. So it has a bit more respect than the other songs you mention. Actually there is no requirement to stand for any song including the National Anthem. (Based on lots of Internet research) Most people do out of respect for the flag and the United States, but it's not a requirement. Also, an interesting bit of trivia is that women aren't required to remove their hats as they are considered part of the outfit they are wearing whereas men are as hats are considered an accessory. Interesting distinction there. The hand over the heart is a personal choice. It could be driven from the Pledge of Allegiance or from military service, but for me it's my way of saying that my heart belongs to the United States.
    The beautiful part about living in the United States is our Freedom of Speech. If you wish to remain seated, or wish to stand, it is your choice.


  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hammster
    Also, an interesting bit of trivia is that women aren't required to remove their hats as they are considered part of the outfit they are wearing whereas men are as hats are considered an accessory. Interesting distinction there. The hand over the heart is a personal choice.
    Goodness! You mean it's not 1952 anymore?

    Bob

  21. #21

    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by bobmark226
    Goodness! You mean it's not 1952 anymore?

    Bob
    LMAO..... Isn't it funny how laws (rules?) get made and then just stay on the books even when times change? I can't recall the last time I saw a woman wear a hat that went with her outfit. Except for someone in an actual uniform.

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