Aug 25, 2011, 9:00 AM EDT
Goshen College (Ind.) is a Mennonite institution, and as such, committed to nonviolence. Its sports mascot, in fact, is the least threatening item found in nature — the leaf. But even some of its alumni must have been taken aback last year when college President Jim Brenneman banned the lyrics to the National Anthem at sporting events.
It was actually March 23, 2010 when Goshen played an instrumental-only version of the National Anthem before two sporting events — the first time since intercollegiate athletics began at the college in 1957 that the anthem was played. This month the college has taken it a step further, banning the Anthem altogether and choosing a new song.
The school’s board told Brenneman to “find an alternative to playing the National Anthem that fits with sports tradition, that honors country and that resonates with Goshen College’s core values and respects the views of diverse constituencies.”
“I am committed to retaining the best of what it means to be a Mennonite college, while opening the doors wider to all who share our core values,” Brenneman said. “And I invite others to join us at Goshen College as we make peace in all of its forms, even with the national anthem.”
Now let’s get out there and win!
Of course The Star Spangled Banner is a violent song, glorifying the bombardment of one of our forts in the War of 1812. I suppose we could have followed the example of the Mennonites and simply fled, giving the nation back to the British. But then we’d all be playing cricket.
“What kind of message did it send to them about hospitality?” Goshen spokesman Richard R. Aguirre told the Chicago Tribune last month. “We thought it was inconsistent to the entire message we were trying to send.”
Anyway, after careful consideration and many hours alone with his iPod, Brenneman chose a replacement song: America the Beautiful, which will be played before every sporting event from now on.
Of course Brenneman fumbled this. Since the college is located in Indiana, the choice is clear: Their new anthem should be this:
ABOUT LAST NIGHT
What you missed while attending bouncy castle church …
- Headline of the Day: Charles Jock begins competition at IAAF World Championships friday night.
- MillerCoors gets sponsorship deals with 23 schools, among them Arizona State, Penn State and Colorado.
- The Nuggets’ Al Harrington wants to get into MMA fighting during the lockout. Practices on hapless blogger.
TODAY IN MARK TRAIL …
“Oh, I’ll just come out and say it, Sgt. McQueen: I love you.”
- So long folks, it’s time for me to take off 18
- Man wins full marathon while pushing his daughter in a baby stroller (video) 14
- Lock and load, it’s youth baseball fundraising time: league raffling off AR-15 rifle (video) 8
- Sim Bhullar is a large basketball player, and I mean it. Anybody want a peanut? 0
- What’s with kids and all these death-defying stunts? 674
- Nothing to see here…just a 70-yard field goal by a high-schooler (video) 3
- None found