Every now and then someone says, "Hey, we should make America the Beautiful our National Anthem!" I don't know if we need to change, but before anyone does anything...what if our National Anthem told the same story a different way...a more particular and American perspective about what makes us great?

I'd love it if you'd listen to this song and tell me what you think. It's a song from a short film made just after WWII.

The House I Live In is a ten-minute short film ...made to oppose anti-Semitism at the end of World War II, it received an Honorary Academy Award[1] and a special Golden Globe Award in 1946.

This is my favorite version...Mr. Sinatra is older, his voice not quite as strong as it used to be, but it always moves me. Sometimes I discover just how much dust is in my home.

In concert, before the song, he says he loves this great big imperfect country (if it was perfect, he says, it wouldn't be any fun to fix)...and I agree with him 100%. How to improve and grow and keep the USA going for another 243 years is a huge discussion. We're not going to agree on a lot. But please, can we all agree the vast majority of us want to live in a nation described in this song?

Earl Robinson/Abel Meeropol (pen name Lewis Allan)

What is America to me
A name, a map, or a flag I see
A certain word, democracy
What is America to me

The house I live in
A plot of earth, the street
The grocer and the butcher
Or the people that I meet
The children in the playground
The faces that I see
All races and religions
That's America to me

The place I work in
The worker by my side
The little town the city
Where my people lived and died
The howdy and the handshake
The air a feeling free
And the right to speak your mind out
That's America to me

The things I see about me
The big things and the small
That little corner newsstand
Or the house a mile tall
The wedding and the churchyard
The laughter and the tears
The dream that's been a growing
For more than two hundred years

The town I live in
The street, the house, the room
The pavement of the city
Or a garden all in bloom
The church the school the clubhouse
The million lights I see
Especially the people
That's America to me

Listen to James Rabe 6a to 10a on Y-105 FM

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