Sunday, September 10, 2006

UNIVERSE SHIFT

“I would rather give my life, than be afraid to give it.”

President Lyndon Johnson. His reply to the Secret Service request that he take a car to Jack Kennedy’s funeral instead of walking the seven or eight blocks from the Capitol to Saint Matthew’s Cathedral.

 

Abraham, Martin, and John

Words and Music by Richard Holler

Anybody here seen my old friend Abraham?
Can you tell me where he's gone?
He freed lotta people but it seems the good they die young
You know I just looked around and he's gone

 

Anybody here seen my old friend John?
Can you tell me where he's gone?
He freed lotta people but it seems the good they die young
I just looked around and he's gone

 

(brief instrumental interlude-organ)

 

Anybody here seen my old friend Martin?
Can you tell me where he's gone?
He freed lotta people but it seems the good they die young
I just looked around and he's gone

 

Didn't you love the things that they stood for?
Didn't they try to find some good for you and me?
And we'll be free
Some day soon, it's gonna be one day

 

Anybody here seen my old friend Bobby?
Can you tell me where he's gone?
I thought I saw him walkin' up over the hill
With Abraham, Martin, and John

 

We’ve been watching Peter Jenning’s documentaries about the Twentieth Century. The program on the early sixties coincided with this weekend. I was going to do an entry on how the assassinations of the sixties impacted me a lot more than 9/11. JFK’s death, reading Bill Shirer’s Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, the violence of the rest of the decade, losing Martin Luther King and Bob Kennedy. I’ve been trying to work up an entry on how my universe shirted long before 9/11. Maybe it will come together later. I’ve always loved this song and frankly I keep puddling up as I’m trying to write so I’ll stop with this for now. I can’t get those damn drums out of my mind.

 

But, I can’t help contrasting Johnson’s attitude and actions with the aftermath of 9/11.

3 comments:

hestiahomeschool said...

I've always loved that song, too, and the image at the end...

toonguykc said...

I would hear that song and like it -- but I didn't know most of the lyrics.  It's pretty f'ing profound.

Hug,
Russ

lightyears2venus said...

I was thinking the same thing about the 60s events vs. 9/11 when I saw coverage of John Connelly's wife's death, especially an old interview asking her something like if the assassination was the end of innocence, since I've heard 9/11 billed as the same thing.   JFK, RFK, MLK, Kent State, Viet Nam, Watergate....it was one kick in the gut after another during our coming of age.  It revolutionized those of us who are on watch today, guarding civil rights and critically examining the call to arms against a foreign enemy.  I read or heard an interesting commentary (maybe NPR) recently forecasting a resurgence of 60s activism as the Baby Boomers retire.  
P.S. I saw an hilarious calendar at Barnes and Noble today--a Bush countdown calendar.  Each month features a photo, a (in)famous Bushism (like the one about how our enemies never stop trying to think of ways to hurt us and we don't either) and the months/days left until the next election.  Made my day.  I woldn't buy it though--sometimes I can actually get through a whole day without thinking of W once and I really don't want to see him on my kitchen wall first thing in the morning and last thing at night, y'know?
*debbi*