Do we have to stand during the national anthem and ‘God Bless America’ at sporting events?

This exchanged happened on Twitter lats night between minor leaguer Jeremy Barfield and a fan.

I have covered numerous sporting events and while in the press box, I have a lot of preparation to do before games. Sometimes my time preparing happens at the same time as the national anthem. Sometimes I continue on with what I am doing. Sometimes I stop. I think it’s fine either way.

And as a fan, I have been to numerous games where the national anthem or ‘God Bless America’ comes on. Most times, I stand and show my respect. But there are times where I am trying to find my seat or am trying to order some food. Should I be criticized for doing what I want to do?

I wouldn’t say the songs are just songs. They have meaning. They are important to the fabric to the country. Is it necessary to sing it before every game? Probably not but I am OK with it. I just don’t know if I should be scolded for not following everyone else.

I am not saying I am un-American. But part of being in American is having the free will to do whatever you want — and that can include staying seated during the national anthem.

When it comes on, I stand. But I will never scold anyone who doesn’t want to.

What do you think? Should it be a certain way that you have to behave or is it whatever you want?


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