Former U.S. coach Arena says national anthem in pro leagues is 'inappropriate'

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  john-russell  •  4 weeks ago  •  10 comments

By:   Shrivathsa Sridhar (MSN)

Former U.S. coach Arena says national anthem in pro leagues is 'inappropriate'
"I question why we're playing the anthem in professional sporting events in our country ... it puts people in awkward positions," Arena, currently the head coach of Major League Soccer (MLS) side New England Revolution, told ESPN. "We don't use the anthem in movie theatres, on Broadway, other events in the U.S. I don't think it's appropriate to have a national anthem before a baseball game or an MLS game.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



AAy0gvU.img?h=24&w=24&m=6&q=60&o=f&l=f&f=png Former U.S. coach Arena says national anthem in pro leagues is 'inappropriate'

(Reuters) - Former United States soccer coach Bruce Arena questioned the relevance of playing the country's national anthem before matches in professional sports leagues, saying it was inappropriate.

e151e5.gif © Reuters/EDGARD GARRIDO Football Soccer - U.S. national soccer team training - World Cup 2018 Qualifiers in Mexico City

Arena said he understood why some athletes take a knee to protest racial discrimination during pre-match renditions of "The Star-Spangled Banner", saying it was appropriate as long as it was respectful.

"I question why we're playing the anthem in professional sporting events in our country ... it puts people in awkward positions," Arena, currently the head coach of Major League Soccer (MLS) side New England Revolution, told ESPN.

"We don't use the anthem in movie theatres, on Broadway, other events in the U.S. I don't think it's appropriate to have a national anthem before a baseball game or an MLS game.

Arena said many of the soccer league's players were also born outside the United States.

"In MLS, most of the players standing on the field during the national anthem are international players. They aren't even Americans. So why are we playing the national anthem?

"... Having said that, I want it understood, I'm very patriotic, but I just think it's inappropriate. And today, it's becoming too big of an issue."

The U.S. Soccer Federation last week dropped its requirement that players stand during the anthem, saying that the policy was wrong and detracted from the Black Lives Matter movement.

The policy was adopted in 2017 after U.S. women's player Megan Rapinoe took a knee during the anthem before a game, in solidarity with NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who knelt to call attention to racial injustice.

"I understand why people are kneeling ... if they're respectful, it's appropriate," Arena added.

"I'm the most patriotic person you're going to be around ... Honoured to represent the U.S. in World Cups and international matches.

"I think playing the national anthem is clearly appropriate at those levels."

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin)

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JohnRussell
1  seeder  JohnRussell    4 weeks ago

I tend to agree with him. I think the National Anthem is played at sports events because it began with baseball, the "national pastime". 

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
3  FLYNAVY1    4 weeks ago

Nope... Play the anthem.  And if the event is hosting a team from another country, play their anthem as well out of sportsmanship and respect.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
3.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @3    4 weeks ago

It doesnt bother me if they play it and it wouldnt bother me if they didnt. It is weird it is played religiously at sporting events but not at all at other live events. Do they play the national anthem before a beauty pageant? Not that I know of.  I guess team sports are a stand in for war. 

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
3.1.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  JohnRussell @3.1    4 weeks ago

I remember back in the early 60s saying the pledge of allegiance in theaters and such.

When all is said and done though, allegiance, anthem, flag waving, its our constitution that really matters.

 
 
 
Tacos!
4  Tacos!    4 weeks ago
This guy: Arena said he understood why some athletes take a knee to protest racial discrimination during pre-match renditions of "The Star-Spangled Banner", saying it was appropriate as long as it was respectful. Same guy: I don't think it's appropriate to have a national anthem before a baseball game or an MLS game.

Wait a minute. It's not ok to play the anthem, but it is ok to make a political protest? What kind of sense does this make?

If I never grew up in a world where the anthem was played at sporting events, I probably wouldn't miss it or seek to have it done. But since it is done, I enjoy it.

I think it brings us together as a common people, and ultimately, that is good for the country. I think that is especially important in a country with so much cultural and ethnic diversity. Diversity is great, but we need to have something in common, too.

It doesn't have to be at sporting events, but that's a pretty efficient place to accomplish that goal. And it's just a couple of minutes at the beginning of something that takes 3 hours anyway, so no big loss.

 
 
 
Citizen Kane-473667
5  Citizen Kane-473667    4 weeks ago

How about if you don't like the music being played, you stay away from the dance! Let's see if your pocketbook backs up your mouth.

 
 
 
Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom
6  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom    4 weeks ago

I don't think it's appropriate to have a national anthem before a baseball game or an MLS game.

His parents immigrated from Italy.  Is it possible that they didn't raise him to possess the same national pride that others are raised to possess?  Personally speaking, I love hearing it at any sporting function.  It creates an atmosphere of excitement and pride that are essential to the love of whatever sport is at hand.

And this:

In MLS, most of the players standing on the field during the national anthem are international players. They aren't even Americans. So why are we playing the national anthem?

...makes me wonder if he would say the same thing if he were head coach of an Italian soccer team.

On the other hand, perhaps this moment in history would inspire the same emotions...without the music.

256   

 
 
 
Thrawn 31
7  Thrawn 31    4 weeks ago

I agree with him, there is no point. It isn't like anyone forgot where they were. On an international stage, sure, but here at home? That seems like jerking yourself off... if you have to do it...

 
 
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