Olympian Gwen Berry says it’s ‘obvious’ that the National Anthem’s ‘3rd paragraph speaks to slavery’

Reprinted from Sara Carter's news page.


By Jenny Goldsberry

Soon-to-be Olympian Gwen Berry appeared on the Black News Channel Tuesday to address her recent protest at the U.S. Olympic trials. Berry made headlines when she turned her back to the American flag during the national anthem after snagging third in the hammer throw. She also held up a shirt that read “activist athlete.”

Back in 2019, Berry got in hot water again at the Pan Am games. During that national anthem, she raised her fist in protest. As a result, the games sanctioned her, and she lost thousands of dollars in sponsorships.

Now, anchor Jimmy Marlow asked the Black athlete to respond to the backlash to her protest. “What is it about ‎the National Anthem or that whole ‎scenario ‎that made you feel so uncomfortable? Why ‎didn’t you want to, you know, ‎acknowledge that part?”

“History,” Berry responded. “If you know your history you’d ‎know the full song of the national ‎anthem. ‎The third paragraph speaks to slaves in America — our blood being slain and — and piltered [sic] all over the floor. ‎It’s disrespectful and it does not speak ‎for black Americans. ‎It’s obvious, there’s no — there’s no ‎question.”

However, the spilt blood in the anthem’s third verse is actually that of the band suffering the “havoc of war.” Slaves are mentioned, but only in a way that implies the “land of the free” is the only refuge that could “save the . . . slave.” At the time, it was a little bit of propaganda to discourage slaves from supporting the British.

“And where is that band who so vauntingly swore,
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion
A home and a Country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave,
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.”

You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism.


NOTE: The opinions expressed in the Sara Carter posts are not necessarily (but probably pretty much) the opinions of Cogny Mann.

I don't necessarily endorse all content from this site but it's always good to get different perspectives. https://saraacarter.com/olympian-gwen-berry-says-its-obvious-that-the-national-anthems-3rd-paragraph-speaks-to-slavery/

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