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4th of July

Culture/Philosophy

Can The “Very Liberal” Celebrate Independence Day?

The week of Independence Day, Gersh Kuntzman of the Daily News, called for Major League baseball to permanently ban the playing of “God Bless America.” While conceding some of its virtues, Kuntzman laments that the classic jingle “embodies” some of “our worst things,” vices like “self-righteousness, forced piety,” and “earnest self-reverence.” Kuntzman approvingly alludes to a 2013 poll conducted by the author of a book on “God Bless America.” The poll found that 61% or so of those asked share Kuntzman’s judgment that the song should go the way of the dinosaur.  The real story here, though, is to be found in how those numbers break down: While only 20.5% of those who wish to see the song banned from major league baseball self-describe as “very conservative,” a whopping 84% who want the same regard themselves as “very liberal.” The “very liberal” stand side-by-side with “foreigners,” like Kuntzman’s British friend, who find “the self-righteousness” and “patriotism” of the song “exactly what [to] expect from Americans.” This is telling. Setting… Keep Reading

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