I was perusing around the web earlier, stumbled on Ball Don't Lie's I was perusing around the web earlier, stumbled on Ball Don't Lie's I was perusing around the web earlier, stumbled on Ball Don't Lie's

A patriotic overreaction

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I was perusing around the web earlier, stumbled on Ball Don’t Lie’s 10-Man Rotation and saw this gem from a reader ‘The Patriot’. He’s talking about something that took place before the Team USA/Germany game.

“After hitting the fast forward button a few times, I got to USA’s national anthem where the camera pans on each of the players as the anthem plays. Each player has their hand over their heart and seems very grateful to represent the USA. The camera continues to pan over each player until it gets to the back row of players where Team USA’s two centers, (Dwight Howard and Chris Bosh), have their hands behind their backs. Neither one of these guys had the respect, courtesy or even patriotism to put their hands over their hearts during the national anthem like the rest of their teammates.

Am I missing something here? Is this not the Olympics where you are representing your country against all other countries? Even in a regular NBA game you should put your hand over your heart during the national anthem so it boggles me even more so they did not do it during the Olympics. Maybe Chris Bosh has spent too much time in Toronto and forgot how that works. Dwight claims to be Superman, but other than apple pie and baseball, nothing is more American than Superman — no excuses for him. I lost all respect for these two stars. My vote is to force these two to sign with a European team like the rest of the clowns that have left the good ol’ USA in search of the almighty dollar.”

Things that make me go hmmm. First off if he was being sarcastic than I would give him a high-five. But I don’t think he had his tongue in his cheek. Now…if he had simply made a point about this being the Olympics and their being a heightened sense of representing one’s country, I maybe could have bought into what he’s saying. But to say neither of them have respect, courtesy or even patriotism…no, sir. That’s a bit overboard don’t you agree? That irked me a teeny bit. I’m sure it would be nice if everyone had their hand over their heart, but it’s not a requirement. There is no rule that says ‘put your hand over your heart’. It’s please rise and take your hats off. They aren’t pulling a Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, nor are they raising their fists in the air. They are just standing. Like the majority of NBA players do during the national anthem. Think about it…if guys never do it in NBA games why would they all of a sudden do it now? They are just programmed to do certain things. The proof is in the pudding.

  1. Michael Jordan always had his hands behind his back. Always. Always. Always.
  2. During the epic Marvin Gaye’s performance of the National Anthem. That same one that gives us all goosebumps….notice anything? Lack of hands on the hearts.
  3. So did a lot of other players, proof from this clip of Carl Lewis’ defaming the National Anthem. And that was circa the early 90’s, nearly two decades ago.
  4. Check out this clip from this year with David Cook singing the National Anthem at the Finals (and yes this will be his last mention ever on this blog). Notice anything? Severe lack of hands over the hearts.

Remember that these basketball players, from high school to college (for a few) to the pros…they hear the National Anthem hundreds and hundreds of times. This may sound offensive but every basketball player at that level has rolled their eyes during at least one national anthem. If you don’t do it during an NBA game why would you do it during the Olympics? A valid answer to this question that proves me wrong gets a prize.