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Responding to concerns about the band

Letter to the Editor | Friday, September 26, 2003

I am writing in response to a recent letter criticizing the spirit of the Band of the Fighting Irish. While I agree with the authors’ concerns, they cannot be connected with matters of spirit. As a four-year member of the band, I (along with many of my classmates) were constantly frustrated with many of the points outlined in the previous article. I personally felt like the powers that be had concentrated on keeping everyone happy instead of giving the greatest contribution to fans and team.

The “kill chant” that the authors spoke was nixed due to a single person’s concern about the inappropriateness of our students yelling “kill” at games. We were not allowed to stand during the games because of one fan’s letter about not being able to see while seated behind the band.

We were not allowed to play while the visiting band plays, effectively letting someone else take over our stadium while we sit and watch. No band member that I ever spoke to favored playing the jig before a defensive series. In fact it made me as angry as the authors to which I am responding. To place these matters on the spirit and performance level of the band members, however, is grossly misaimed and inappropriate.

Those members don’t choose to sit. They don’t choose the sideline music; they choose to work every day to be a part of the Notre Dame spirit and to separate them from that is an injustice. Anyone who thinks otherwise should show up for their 8 a.m. practice next home game while most of campus is fast asleep. That’s spirit – misaimed criticism is not.

Michael Loud

class of ’03

Sept. 25