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CBS Crew on NBA Team’s Botched Canceling of National Anthem: ‘Not My Favorite Song’

CBS This Morning co-hosts on Thursday seemed baffled at the controversy enveloping the Dallas Mavericks as the basketball team first canceled playing the national anthem and then was forced to reinstate it by the NBA. Co-host Gayle King marveled, “I appreciate the efforts to try to raise the conversation and see bring awareness to what many believe is still injustice in this country.”

She added, “I think [team owner Mark Cuban] was trying to shed a light on that. Now it’s become a polarizing thing.” Yes, censoring the national anthem is “polarizing.” If you’re not a liberal news journalist in New York, you might be able to understand how the rest of the country might not like the attempted removal. Co-host Anthony Mason admitted the Star-Spangled Banner is “not my favorite song.” 

 

 

He jumped in and declared the national anthem to be a lousy song:  

It’s not my favorite song, to be honest. It never has been. I think there are other patriotic songs that I like better. I mean, the Philadelphia Flyers for many years would play God Bless America. It became sort of a lucky charm for them. So you know — I understand the patriotic aspect that people feel at the beginning of a game.

Co-host Tony Dokoupil tried to rescue Mason by clarifying, “America can be your favorite country without being the favorite song.” On Wednesday, ABC and NBC didn’t find the ending of the national anthem before Mavericks games to be controversial. CBS This Morning covered it that day, but Dokoupil seemed impressed, calling it “super interesting.”

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A transcript is below. Click “expand” to read more.

CBS This Morning

2/11/2021

7:49 AM ET

VLAD DUTHIERS: On to this story, the Dallas Mavericks stopped playing the Star Spangled Banner before home games. Last night, they did play it for the very first time this season. The team was forced to reverse course after the NBA reinforced the league this all teams must include it as part of the pregame ritual. The NBA said teams were free to run operations as they see fit. Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban told ESPN he didn’t cancel the anthem and made the decision to skip it after listening to the community.

MARK CUBAN: We have no problem playing the national anthem at all. That isn’t the issue at all. The real issue is how do you — how do you express the voices of those who feel the anthem doesn’t represent them?

DUTHIERS: I did some interesting research into the history of playing of the national anthem at sport games. They started doing it in the Civil War, that was the first time. It picked up steam during world War I and ultimately during World War II. So it’s been a tradition for a long time in sports.

GAYLE KING: I appreciate the efforts to try to raise the conversation and see bring awareness to what many believe is still injustice in this country. I think he was trying to shed a light on that. Now it’s become a polarizing thing.

TONY DOKOUPIL: Given its patriotic roots tied to war and sacrifice, you can understand why some people have a visceral reaction to it not being played.

ANTHONY MASON: It’s not my favorite song, to be honest. It never has been, to be honest. I think there are other patriotic songs that I like better. I mean, the Philadelphia Flyers for many years would play God Bless America. It became sort of a lucky charm for them. So you know — I understand the patriotic aspect that people feel at the beginning of a game.

KING: I do, too. I understand the other side, too.

DUTHIERS: Exactly.

DOKOUPIL: America can be your favorite country without being the favorite song.

KING: Who did we have on this week? Adan Grant. Rethink. Rethink sometimes.