But it turns out the matter is more complicated. The intrepid Dave Lull saw the comment and did, as only he can, some research and came up with this:I suggest that Mr. Walker familiarize himself with the Corps of Colonial Marines, units of runaway slave that served in the British Army during the War of 1812. Those units were especially active in the series of engagements --- Bladensburg, Washington, North Point --- leading up to the Battle of Baltimore memorialized by Francis Scott Key. Their participation in these battles caused a wave of fear that spread throughout the slaveholding elites in Maryland and Virginia. Given that Key was a member of that class, it's quite reasonable to conclude that the third verse of the anthem does indeed celebrate the deaths of runaway American slaves. History is history, no matter how much one might want to sugarcoat it. As you suggest, let those who can read, read ... especially before posting invective of the sort supplied by Mr. Walker.
The National Anthem Does Not 'Celebrate Slavery': The Meaning of Lyric Used to Defend Kaepernick. This, after pointing out that no one seems quite sure what Francis Scott Key meant by the the verses inspiring the controversy, reaches the following conclusion:
… by the time "The Star Spangled Banner" was culturally adopted by the American people in the twentieth century as the national anthem, only recognized by a 1931 Act under Herbert Hoover, not only were the three additional stanzas largely forgotten, but official versions used by the military and sanctioned by the U.S. government did not contain the lyrics about the "hireling and slave."Anyway, we all know the reason why we stand at the playing of the national anthem, and it is not
to celebrate slavery.
As for Francis Scott Key, his record regarding slavery is, to say the least, mixed.
Speaking for myself, I'd rather "America, the Beautiful" were the national anthem.