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June 26, 2012


greg mansur

"I had a brother at Khe Sahn
Fighting off the Viet Cong
They're still there, he's all gone."

Today I heard 'Born In The USA' at Tom Thumb. When the above lyric was played I did what I always do when I hear it: I choke up. Why? After all these years of hearing the song I should be numb to it's politics, or else hear it as a rallying song for, as you point out beautifully, for the Republicans or Democrats. All those men and women killed for doing what they thought was right, being soldiers for each other, taking care of each other. Why were they in Vietnam, it didn't matter to them. Back in America it should have mattered, but it didn't and still doesn't. War is Peace. Strength is Ignorance. So now its Irag, or Afghanistan, or maybe soon Iran: wars that America must Win at all costs or negotiate Peace with honor, in order to avoid the truth of all the senseless killing. Really? Come on Washington. This is where the corporate hedgemony sends its boys and girls to die, makes its billions on military contracts, wraps the dead in flags, calls them American heros, denies the media the right to photograph the returning caskets, and calls those who disagree with them unAmerican. And the word America, once the hope of a subjugated peoples, once the hope for the sons and daughters of the working class to create a better life, is now a land where "Nowhere to run ain't got nowhere to go" is the cry of those who thought Reagan was as bad as it was going to get, and that campaign funding reform would make the campaign process more equitable for all Americans! And yes all these candidates are amusing but who wants to be amused to death?

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