Editorial: No singing allowed

Column By Mike Bibb

Photo By Micah Rea: The Rushingbrook Children’s Choir is pictured just before they started singing in National Statuary Hall in the U.S. Capitol on Friday, May 26.

A kid’s choir singing the National Anthem in the U.S. Capitol was abruptly stopped by Capitol Police, informing them “demonstrations” were not permitted.

At least, the children and choir director were not incarcerated, accused of inciting an “insurrection.”


Since Liz Cheney is no longer in Congress, maybe she can form a special nonpartisan citizen’s committee to investigate the obviously disruptive behavior and annoying voices of a bunch of 10–15-year-olds warbling The Star-Spangled Banner. 

Even more bizarre, similar performances are routinely performed without the cops being called to squelch the events.

According to the Washington Times, June 2, 2023, David Rasbach, founder and director of the Rushingbrook Children’s Choir, indicated he had permission from three congressional offices for his choir to sing the anthem.

“I couldn’t believe what was happening,” Rasback said. “that they would stop the National Anthem of all songs.”


Because “They were told that certain Capitol Police said it might offend someone or cause issues,” said Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green (SC-R).

The police, however, offered a different version of the story.

In a statement to the Daily Signal, an online news service, CPD said “Recently, somebody posted a video of a children’s choir singing the Star-Spangled Banner in the U.S. Capitol Building and wrongfully claimed we stopped the performance because it ‘might offend someone.’  Here is the truth, demonstrations and musical performances are not allowed in the U.S. Capitol.”

The press release went on to say that police permitted the choir to resume singing and finish their presentation. 

Rasback spoke with the police officer. “How do you think this is going to affect these children?  Their first time visiting the Capitol and then they have this disappointment.”

Reportedly, he indicated the officer responded by shrugging her shoulders and saying, “They sounded beautiful, but they can go outside and sing.” 

Not exactly a mature, professional reply.

Also, CPD accused a “congressional staff member who was accompanying the group of knew the rules, yet lied to the officers multiple times about having permission from various offices.”

“That’s a bald-faced lie” replied Micah Rea, director of The Rea Group and organizer of the choir’s trip.  “You can clearly see in the video, they (police) literally stopped him (Rasbach) before they finished singing The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Continuing, Rea added “That is absolutely, irrefutable wrong.  She (the female police officer) did everything she could to stop us and not let us continue singing, period.”

Rea and Rasbach both claimed the police were not telling the truth when they commented musical performances are not allowed in the Capitol.  Videos of evangelical singer Sean Feucht, performing on Mar. 9 and 10, 2023, and of 80 pastors singing in the Capitol Rotunda on March 29, 2023, were offered as evidence of the police’s misstatements.

Previously, the Ugandan Kids Choir sang on Cherry Blossom Day, March 30, 2019.  

The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir has also made a Capitol appearance, as have numerous others.

All three congressional offices replied they did, indeed, grant permission for the children’s choir to sing a selection of five songs. 

So, who’s telling or, not telling, the truth?

It shouldn’t be difficult to figure out.  If three different congressional offices gave their consent for the children’s choir to perform then, I’d imagine, there would be a record of it.

Likewise, if the police maintain the choir didn’t have proper authorization, insisting a congressional representative lied about it, then that, too, would be documented.

Plus, Capitol videos of the choir’s performance are available for review.

Equally important, did CPD believe the 20-member choir simply showed up one day, walked into the building without being questioned by security, and began their brief vocal concert?  Only to have it interrupted by police because a Capitol staff member, chaperoning the group, was accused of lying to the cops?

What would possibly be the motive for such a ridiculous stunt? 

Unfortunately, since the incident occurred in Washington, it’s anyone’s guess who’s on the level.

However, if I was to place a wager on who’s being candid in their reporting of the incident, believe I’d bet the farm on the children’s choir. 

Keep in mind, this is the same police department that shot and killed an unarmed Air Force woman veteran on Jan. 6, 2021.  The only fatality that day.  The officer involved in the shooting later received a commendation.

CYA seems to be the general rule in the nation’s capital.  Getting untarnished accusations, facts, and truth is a challenging endeavor.

Even more arduous, convincing the media to accurately and honestly report on it without injecting their own corporate bias.

Just ask former President Donald J. Trump.  Or, presume to receive a straight answer from President Joseph R. Biden. 

One has endured six or seven years of constant allegations and negative press, while the other has enjoyed nearly 50 years of a swampy career, covered by fawning news paparazzi.  

If any good has come from the children’s choir Washington fiasco, it might be that they are a little older and wiser in what to expect when visiting Capitol Hill.

Often, things are not what they appear.

The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author.