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The honesty of a live performance

Regarding the Feb. 1 Reliable Source item “She’s ready to sing out”:

It is disturbing to learn that Beyonce lip-synced our national anthem at the presidential inauguration. At best, she tricked us into believing that she was singing, and that we were hearing, the anthem live. 

Neither trickery nor a lie has any place in an inaugural ceremony. (I wouldn’t be so bothered had she lip-synced at a sporting event such as the Super Bowl, for example.) In fact, such dishonesty is so at odds generally with the substance of the day’s events that I, for one, would have preferred a mediocre, live rendition of the song to the polished, pre-taped “performance” we witnessed. 

This is a matter of basic ethics — of honesty and authenticity. Can you imagine the inaugural crowd’s reaction had Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced, “And now, ladies and gentlemen, lip-syncing our national anthem, Beyonce!”

William McLain IV, Rockville

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Regarding Chris Richards’s Jan. 24 Style article “Give us reality — and also give us perfection”:

On July 17, I had the honor of performing the national anthem at Nationals Park. I had a severe head cold, an ear and throat infection and a­ 102-degree temperature. Beyonce has no excuse for her lip-sync. If you are not able to sing, cancel.

It is disrespectful to the country and public for a performer not to give his or her best at all times. I would have traveled overnight to represent the United States at the president’s inauguration. This was not about fame, money and popularity. It is about honesty and love of country.

Michael Bellis, Holladay, Tenn.

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