Today here in America we are celebrating our Independence Day. As I was looking at my news feed I was noticing several music lists of Fourth of July appropriate music. A lot of chest thumping, “party in the USA” songs. I’m sorry, I’m not feeling it. When displays of national pride and values begin to resemble old film footage of May Day parades in Moscow, then I’m not on board with “America, Fuck Yeah!”.
Given what I see around me, I am not in a particularly celebratory mood. Mine is more reflective. My feelings about America are complex and they should be. Everyone’s should be. When big complex things are boiled down to simplistic, love/hate options, you run the risk of letting Evil frame the discussion in ways that preclude nuance, sympathy and empathy.
These two songs by Paul Simon are much more about what I and many others are feeling about our country today.
Simon & Garfunkel – America
Paul Simon – American Tune
Have a safe holiday.