The Frontstretch: A Voice of a Veteran by Jeff Meyer -- Thursday June 2, 2005

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A Voice of a Veteran

Jeff Meyer · Thursday June 2, 2005


Every so often I get an email that says it better than I ever could. This is one of those.

The author is Staff Sergeant Tim, who is currently stationed at Ft. Benning, GA with the United States Army. Tim is a loyal reader of and a NASCAR fan (not to mention a fellow Iowan). Now I don’t know if Tim is scheduled to join our troops overseas or if he already has been and is back or what. It doesn’t really matter. He is one of the gallant troops that defends our freedom and I think that what he has to say would be agreed upon by all our troops and should be by you too.

Hey Jeff,

I haven’t written to you in quite a while, I believe I was still in San Antonio. Now I’m at Ft Benning, GA. I did make it back to Iowa this past Christmas and thought about looking you up but just didn’t have the time as I was seeing as many kin as I could. Damn it was cold! As a fellow Iowan I thought you’d be a good target for my rant. Plus, I’d like to get your opinion too.

Our National Anthem is a signature of this great land. It’s performance should be reverent and majestic and garner the utmost respect. Those within earshot have a duty to shut the hell up, stand up, remove their headgear and place their right hand over their heart, like we were taught in elementary school.

Those performing America’s Song have a duty to “do it right”, not improve & “R&B” it up. I have yet to hear a majestic R&B song. A couple of pre-race performances recently have really pissed me off and basically just turned my stomach. Anthony Hamilton’s rendition this past Saturday night was the worst and most disrespectful piece of crap I’ve ever heard, right up there with Rosanne. Mr. Montomery of Montgomery Gentry was right up there on the list of sucky performances too. He looked and sounded like he was hammered!

Many pre-race performers, I can’t recall names right now, have really done it right. Some of the groups adding tasteful harmonies just add to the moment. I have found myself wiping a tear after several of these sentimental renditions. That’s when I know it’s been done right.

NASCAR, the tracks or whoever books the acts needs to lay down the law, do it right or do it elsewhere. Some traditions have to be maintained and there are still too many God fearing red blooded American good ole boys to screw around with something we take so seriously. Not to mention the veterans who have fought, many dying, and those who continue to fight, defending our Nation. They deserve the respect of a well performed Anthem.

I could go on and on but I think you get my jist. This is serious to the majority of us!

Thanks for letting me vent.

Staff Sergeant, US Army
Ft Benning, GA

Timothy, you hit the nail on the head, my man! I could not have said it any better myself.

Even though you aren’t an officer, I, along with everyone else here at the Frontstretch salute you!

Let’s hope whoever is responsible for booking these performers, pulls their head out of whatever it is stuck in, and finally sees the light!

Keep up the great work, and THANKS!

(Editors Note: John Michael Montgomery, who was referred to above as “Mr. Montgomery”, is not with Montgomery Gentry, but is the brother of Eddie Montgomery of Montgomery Gentry.)

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06/03/2005 08:15 AM

IMO when it becomes obvious the the singer in place to do the anthem is either incompetent or disrespectful the operators of the track and TV sound systems should immediately switch to a recording of Diamond Rio or whoever that splendid singer who overwhelmed the sound system at Phoenix was.


Contact Jeff Meyer

Recent articles from Jeff Meyer:

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