Ah, The Sound Of Music. Arguably the crowning achievement of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, this film has inspired many a fond memory in my family—and surely yours, too.
I’ll never forget the moment I watched a stage performance of the musical as a young, airheaded teen tagging along with a friend. I’d never seen the movie before then and thought it was just some boring show where shiny, happy people sing and prance through meadows. It wasn’t until I noticed the massive Nazi flag draped over the stage (sort of late in the show, actually) that I sat up and started paying attention to the actual story.
Since then, the incredible story of the Von Trapp family and their remarkably strong will in defying the Nazi forces that annexed their home country of Austria has been a shining example to me and a favorite to tell my children.
Plus, the songs are just so addictive, and random snippets of them can be frequently heard shouted around my home with minimal prompting.
But, sadly, it seems a New York Times reporter hasn’t been blessed with such an experience with TSOM, or else she didn’t pay close attention after that big ol’ swastika flew up on stage to find out, you know, why it was there in the first place.
Before the start of a press conference last week, members of the press were treated to a performance by the United States Marine Corps Band, which was comprised of a medley of classic movie themes including “Edelweiss,” “The Sound of Music,” “Over the Rainbow,” and “When You Wish Upon A Star”.
However, a startling lack of awareness of the story of the Von Trapp family and the meaning behind “Edelweiss” led, to put it lightly, to some confusion:
“Edelweiss” was being played as we walked into the @WhiteHouse
— Nikki Schwab (@NikkiSchwab) April 18, 2019
Nikki Schwab, the Washington D.C. reporter for the New York Post, noted the song choice for reasons undiscernible to this writer. While a handful of her followers actually got the reference and quipped about the Trump family escaping to the hills while the song played, Maggie Haberman, the White House reporter for The New York Times, seems to have totally missed the mark:
Does…anyone at that White House understand the significance of that song? https://t.co/IK9h8fOwNj
— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) April 18, 2019
Alright, now, I’m gonna need y’all to put on your best tin foil and help me solve this mystery. What does Haberman think is the “significance” of Edelweiss?
I know what you’re thinking (in spite of the tin foil). You’re probably thinking something along the lines of this:
Wait, what am I missing? "Edelweiss" is not a pro-Nazi song, it's anti-Nazi. It's Baron Von Trapp's middle finger to the Nazis at the music festival in the Sound of Music. Rodgers and Hammerstein made that song up for that very purpose.
— Pat Leonard (@HeyHokie) April 18, 2019
Or, if you’re a little more fluent in sarcasm, something like this:
I’m sure Trump hand picked it so everyone would quickly make the Nazi connection. Nefarious! https://t.co/f88fJbwFIw
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) April 18, 2019
Or, if you’re just plain dumbfounded, something like this:
— Chicks On The Right (@chicksonright) April 18, 2019
While Haberman didn’t actually respond to the cascade of explanations and corrections she received, with the exception of a terse exchange with Ben Shapiro that revealed nothing, it could be cautiously presumed that she meant to suggest Nazism is afoot at the White House.
Because a beautiful, covertly anti-Nazi song immortalized by Christopher Plummer (who, though he may be “shiny” as my grandma says, didn’t actually sing the song) about the austerely beautiful white flowers that speckle his overtaken homeland is exactly the means any clandestine white nationalist would use to express their hate to the world. Obviously.
Here, Haberman. Take another look and learn the real “significance” of Edelweiss before you give yourself a headache.