Given that anthem4england and others have repeatedly warned of the consequences of having the same national anthem for England and Britain, it’s rather amusing to read of the ‘fury’ when non-English Olympians fail to sing God Save the Queen.
Why should they sing something that they regard as the English national anthem (and with some justification); do we ask English Olympians to sing Flower of Scotland or Land of My Fathers?
Rather predictably it was the Daily Mail that was most outraged.
The Early Doors blog provides a rational (non-Daily Mail) perspective (my bold):
1-Singing the national anthem is, and always has been, optional.
2-Singing the national anthem is not a barometer of how much you love your country.
3-How much you love your country is not a barometer of how good you are at sport.
4-One of the things that makes Britain semi-decent is the element of personal freedom. Countries that force people to sing national anthems? Not so free.
5-Olympic athletes are sportsmen, not singers. Their focus should be on performance, not fake displays of patriotism for the benefit of the press.
6-In football terms, God Save The Queen is the English anthem, Land Of Our Fathers is the Welsh one. ED can understand Welsh players not singing the anthem associated with England. Not because they hate the Queen, but because it would feel a bit weird.
7-There was no show of disrespect. The players stood to attention, and didn’t in any way muck about.
8-Hardly anyone was offended by the non-sing, and those that were should have their opinions instantly disregarded as moronic.
Anthem4england endorses the sentiments of Early Doors, but with an addendum to point 6 to state that England and Britain should have different national anthems.