Hey there Mr. off-key Michael Kinsley! Yeah! I'm talking to you. I just read your last column in the Washington Post. Yeah. I read the whole fucking thing. Now I'm telling you to shut the fuck up about the Star Spangled Banner.
It must be a pretty fucking slow news day for you to choose to write a whole column about how our national anthem is pretty much unsingable (in your fucking opinion). I have never heard you sing the Star Spangled Banner. But I bet you mutter along as best you can. Can I sing all the high notes? Nope. Do I try? Yup. Every fucking time. It is the national anthem after all.
I suppose I should lay out some of my beefs with your column. First off, the only portion of the poem "The Star Spangled Banner" that is the national anthem is the first stanza. All the subsequent stanzas (including the penultimate verse you reference) are part of the poem but not part of the anthem. You apparently aren't up to speed on that one.
Secondly, the songs you suggest as possible replacements are, for the most part, whimpy tunes that lamely describe the physical beauty of our nation. This is not to say that our nation isn't physically beautiful. It most surely is. But pretty much every country in the world has a song (or two) about how beautiful their fucking country is. Why would we want to lump ourselves in with everyone else on the fucking planet?
Thirdly, the only vaugely acceptable song of the ones you mentioned as a replacement is the "Battle Hymn of the Republic." I was born and raised in Virginia. I love the Battle Hymn of the Republic. I wouldn't mind all three verses being made into the National Anthem.
Lastly, I realize you are a liberal guy and all... So I can understand why you don't like the military or religious overtones of the Star Spangled Banner (and Battle Hymn of the Republic). And furthermore, I suppose your liberalism (like President Obama's) is the driving force behind this crusade against the Star Spangled Banner. You want to make it easier for people. Just like many of your positions and policies that purport to make life "easier" they really are just making people fucking soft.
Riddle me this? Do you know why we sing the Star Spangled Banner? Because it is hard. And last time I checked real Americans do things not because they are easy; but because they hard.