The Forgotten Third Verse of the “Star Bangled Banner” & the Celebration of Slavery


There has been a big debate surrounding San Francisco 49ers’ Quarterback Colin Kaepernick and his refusal of not standing during the Star Spangled Banner national anthem.

“To show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color.” Colin states. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies on the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder”

This has sparked our resident Political News expert, Mike Muse to do a little research on what exactly the Star Spangled Banner stands for. Surprisingly enough, he found a third verse that nobody ever mentions or sings.

O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight
O’er the ramparts we watch’d were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket’s red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there,
O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore dimly seen through the mists of the deep
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream,
’Tis the star-spangled banner—O long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

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.

O thus be it ever when freemen shall stand
Between their lov’d home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with vict’ry and peace may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the power that hath made and preserv’d us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto – “In God is our trust,”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

We learned that the third verse notes the phrase “hireling and slave” refers to black slaves hired to fight on the side of the British during the War of 1812. They were initially promised to be freed after fighting for our county, but were revoked that promise soon after the war was over.

Listen to Mike Muse elaborate below. Follow his lead on Twitter for more @IamMikeMuse.


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