, , , , ,

Derivative. Original photo source: Penn State_Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Unified Patriots by Vassarbushmills

ITEM: The University of Maryland marching band has only this week dispensed with playing the state song, which they say is pro-confederacy and openly racist. This according to The Hill. Only no one there actually bothered to find out what those lyrics were, or note that Maryland was never a part of the confederacy. Adopted as the state song in 1939, it is from an 1861 poem by an ex-pat Marylander living in New Orleans at the outbreak of the Civil War. This means that since 1939 school children had sung this song in classrooms, and sports fans stood and sang the lyrics at sporting events, all the way into the modern era, long after Maryland schools and colleges had been desegregated, beginning as early as 1951. 80 years.

Maryland My Maryland Civil War song by A Baltimorean in Louisiana-Miller and Beacham. Part of <a href="https://www.loc.gov/collections/civil-war-sheet-music/">Civil War Sheet Music Collection</a> Source: <a href="https://www.loc.gov/resource/ihas.200002492.0/?sp=1">Library of Congress</a>

Above: Image one to Maryland My Maryland Civil War song written by A Baltimorean in Louisiana. Published by Miller and Beacham, Baltimore 1861. Source: Part of Civil War Sheet Music CollectionLibrary of Congress

I don’t know if the Maryland lyrics were altered after 1951. In Kentucky “My Old Kentucky Home” – a famous Stephen Collins Foster song, had one line most would consider to be offensive that had to be culled and changed, to “this summer the people are gay” – sometime in the late 1960s. (Not sure if they ever had to fix that “gay” part later on.)

Oh, the song should go, no doubt about it, but it should have been gone in 1951, when the University first admitted black students, not just as a university band song, but as the state song.

Why it wasn’t gone is the topic of this discussion, for it defines, and has defined at least since the 1930s, what purports to be state and university officials tone deafness to the zeitgeist of the time, not to mention their prime directive. The University of Maryland, like so many others since the 1970s, had morphed into the paragon of liberal elitism, political correctness growing on them like acne on a 13-year old in a candy store, yet was indifferent to the incongruities that lay at their feet in the offices they had inherited.

They missed it because they never actually cared. Indifference.

If they actually cared about the liberal sensitivities of the student body, and wanted to prevent the curvature of the spine that accompanies conservative thinking, or moral certainties associated with religion, that song would have found the dustbin by 1954.

Still, here it is, 63 years later, still the state song, and how many university chancellors, how many band directors, how many Department of Political Correctness administrators since 1993, how many sports fans, or black kids in Baltimore, had stood and sung that song without ever once paying attention to the offensive words?

Well, we all know why now. But why not over the past 40 years when the liberal guardians of public morality were still young and zealous about the race-righteous mission?

The lesson to be learned is this: Imagine if a 1000 Maryland citizens dressed in their finest business suits and dresses, then marched up to the doors of the president of the University, then stopped, and reached inside a pocket and pulled forth a black bandana, then tied it on, then marched inside the administration building with a list of demands, among them, that the state song be preserved. What would the university do right now, in 2017?

In all likelihood they would do the same had 1000 citizens marched on the same office in 1951 demanding the state song be banished. They would have bent to the mob.

This tells us much about both the native cowardice and the native laziness of certain types of officials in the public sector. They are called “bureaucrats.” Had John Cleese taken this simple theme and turned it into a comedy, he’d be in his 35th year as the number one show on Public Television[…]

Continue Reading