Students Silenced for Singing Anthem at Lincoln Memorial


P.J. ORVETTI
NBC Washington
August 11, 2010

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In 1939, the Daughters of the American Revolution refused to let Marian Anderson perform before an integrated audience at Constitution Hall. The Board of Education of the then-segregated District also refused to let her perform in the auditorium of a white public high school. So Anderson turned to a symbol of freedom: the Lincoln Memorial.

That April, Anderson held an open-air concert on the steps of the monument to the end of slavery and the ideals of the Republic. Stepping up before a racially mixed audience of more than 75,000, Anderson began with “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee.”

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Two months ago, at the same memorial, a group of students were confronted by a security guard for singing the national anthem.

The students, members of the conservative Young America’s Foundation, were told by U.S. Park Police that they were “were in violation of federal law and their impromptu performance constituted a demonstration in an area that must remain ‘completely content neutral,’” reports FoxNews.com.

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