Is the song ‘America, The Beautiful’ politically incorrect on Veterans Day 2013?

Is the song ‘America, The Beautiful’ politically incorrect on Veterans Day 2013?

Iwo Jima sculptureOn Sunday, the final hymn in our church was America, The Beautiful, in honor of Veterans Day.

We only sang the popular first verse but after reading all the verses I fully expected teams of lawyers from the ACLU, American Atheists, or Americans United Against Separation of Church and State to be waiting in the parking lot threatening lawsuits and demanding that the song be torn from the pages of the hymnal.

Even though this is a cherished patriotic song, one can just about hear these groups arguing before a judge saying that mentioning God in a patriotic song violates the separation of church and state. Don’t laugh, because this argument is closer to reality than you think.

Here are seven more of their “arguments” against America, The Beautiful:

  1. The song is offensive and harmful to any American who does not believe in God.
  2. The notion of God “shedding his grace on thee” violates the civil rights of “thee” Americans who have actively chosen to avoid any grace being shed on them.
  3. The song is an example of the “war against women” because only the “brotherhood” is being “crowned with thy good.”
  4. The phrase from “sea to shining sea,” fails to mention that the seas are rising due to climate change, therefore this line must be rewritten.
  5. The words, “Pilgrim feet, wilderness and freedom” are obvious references to the slaughtering of Native Americans and the stealing of their lands. Thus, new apology verses must be included.
  6. America, the Beautiful is a descriptive opinion of America’s landscape as seen through the eyes of farmers living in mid-west and mountain states. We now demand an alternative title that reflects the visual experience of the majority of Americans who live in crowded urban areas.
  7. Our groups will now seek legal action to change the title of America, The Beautiful to America, The Pothole.  

Presented below are the original lyrics to America, The Beautiful as written by Katherine Lee Bates in 1913. She could never have imagined how much the cultural fabric of her beautiful America has changed in 100 years.

Today, let’s dedicate these lyrics to all veterans who have served and especially those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our America, still beautiful.

American flag being foldedAmerica, The Beautiful

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America! God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet,
Whose stern impassion’d stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America! God mend thine ev’ry flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!

O beautiful for heroes proved In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved,
And mercy more than life!
America! America! May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness,
And ev’ry gain divine!

O Beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam,
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America! God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

Cross-posted at PJ Media

Myra Kahn Adams

Myra Kahn Adams

Myra Kahn Adams is a media producer and political writer. She was on the 2004 Bush campaign's creative team and the 2008 McCain campaign's ad council. Writing credits include, National Review, Washington Examiner, World Net Daily, Breitbart and many others. Contact Myra at


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