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Yes or No to the National Anthem at High School Hockey in Pennsylvania

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Getty Images, photo by Phillip MacCallum

I can’t understand what is going on in Central and Western Pennsylvania with the high school hockey league. PIHL commissioner Ed Sam sent emails to schools stating the ‘National Anthem’ will not be played before high school hockey games in that region. He says it’s a financial matter not a lack of patriotism. According to Sam, it costs $300 and hour to rent the ice for games and singing the ‘Anthem’ takes away ice time. Not only that, but it was causing scheduling delays and some games had to be curfewed or ended before time ran out.

Sounds crazy to me that anyone would suggest such a thing and it must have seemed the same to parents and school members. Sam received about 4,000 emails, including many from other states, to complain. They were going to do away with the ‘National Anthem’ before all high school hockey games but since the emails have been pouring in, the league has had a change of heart. Sam says the decision was never meant to be disrespectful; it was all about the money. The high school hockey league will be singing the ‘National Anthem’ again, and that’s a good thing.


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