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National Anthem

July 14, 1991

In response to "Wild Pitch: Marriott Says It Erred Again at the Ballpark," Metro, July 4:

The Marriott Corp. policy in regard to Dodger vendors working during the singing of "The Star Spangled Banner" was not wrong. It is just too bad Marriott did not stick to its policy.

The United States' mediocre version of a national anthem is overplayed, usually badly sung and if Marriott could shorten the food lines and serve a few people while a soloist and the fans butcher that unsingable song, I endorse it wholeheartedly.

Our national anthem is now just a numbing litany to be tolerated before the umpire can shout "play ball." It commemorates a forgettable battle from a war nobody cares about. "The Star Spangled Banner" is poor poetry set to a tavern drinking song that defies the vocal range of 99% of the population.

I'd much rather forgo the 1,001st terrible version of the national anthem in favor of being served during it--it beats standing in line while the game is being played. It would not bother me at all if the anthem were eliminated at sporting events. There is no good reason for it to be played at such an inappropriate venue.

Marriott was also correct in its initial opinions regarding Roger, the peanut vendor, and the non-grilled hot dogs. It is too bad Marriott officials caved in when they were right in the first place.

GARY A. LYNCH

Los Angeles

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