With great curiosity, I followed the story of the New York Yankees’ banning singer Kate Smith’s rendition of “God Bless America” during their games because it was “recently discovered” the deceased singer recorded two questionable songs in the early 1930s considered racist in nature. I was not around in the ‘30s to understand the cultural context of these songs but reading some who have studied such things it seems these two songs were parodies of racists—they were making fun of the idiocy of racism. This reminded me of Mel Brooks’ song, “Springtime for Hitler”. If you do not know the context of that song it could be offensive because Brooks (a Jewish man) would be dubbed an anti-Semite.
The Yankees certainly have the right to play whatever song they want during the 7th inning stretch. I do find hypocrisy in an organization that banned black players from their team until 1947 exiling this woman for a couple of songs from nearly 20 years earlier.
Our attitudes towards others change throughout our history—both for good and bad—it is an individual decision of how we treat others. I am a firm believer in defining you by your character and actions, not by how you look or your background. The problem with that is it is subjective—it changes—and how do people know where they stand when attitudes about them change?
Have you ever had a person with authority seemingly changing in the wind? What you did yesterday was great, but when you do the same thing today, they get upset. That makes life unpredictable and frustrating.
I love all aspects of God, but one specific trait of His that I find great comfort in is His consistency—I know where I stand with Him! In Malachi 3:6 He declares “For I, the LORD, do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.” Additionally, Hebrews 13:8 declares “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”
We will change, and often need to; God does not. Therefore, His expectations of us never change so we are not relegated to a guessing game of our standing before Him. Scripture is very clear of the never changing path to Him in Romans 10:9-10, “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.”