I suppose to be totally fair, I am not impressed when the candidate I support enlists some Rock n Roll legend, even actor, to increase my esteem of said candidate. It insults my intelligence. Or, perhaps, it tells me what these candidates feel about the intelligence of the electorate. Although I do take solace today when some artists from the entertainment industry indicate that they, unlike their artistic colleagues, have not drank the Kool-Aid.
When I appreciated the Boss the most was during my college days, when I was least informed politically, also dead in my sins and transgressions. As a long-distance runner, I loved the song Born to Run, sang it with all the angst and passion that the Boss sang with, but sensed that he was reflecting anxieties that I wasn’t relating to. But it was a cool tune. I loved the album The River, would sing long parts of it to my bride as we would drive long distances in the car, giving her the permission to sleep as long as she was an audience for me. I have to admit, Boss, I sort of checked out from your music after that point, because you seemed to stray from your pure musical story-telling in order to crank out the more formulaic popular music that took you to mainstream stardom. I liked your real life storytelling best.
But Boss, I care deeply about my country. So much so, that I read publications that are far from popular and mainstream to inform my mind about foreign policy and other national and international interests. Sometimes when I run I listen to books on economics, on Islamic history, on social behavior. I have begun to read more widely on the history of our nation’s founding, and the moral, ethical and political concerns that shaped us.
Boss, I’m deeply concerned about the fiscal policies and philosophies of any who govern our nation. I’m deeply concerned that we take seriously the mantle that God has granted to us as a nation who would champion the individual freedom of peoples everywhere. More than these concerns Boss, I’m deeply concerned about a government who begins to believe that it has the mandate to restrain religious freedoms of individuals and organizations in order to impose its own policies and agendas, and notably those that sanction murder of the unborn under the guise of women’s rights. Boss, I don’t know if you remember, but in The River, when you got Mary pregnant, you didn’t abort, you did the honorable thing and married her.
Boss, why would I possibly believe that you, or others who have made lots of money by entertaining, even entertaining me, have anything to say to me that would sway me to vote according to your own convictions. You may possibly know as much as me in all these important areas, possibly more. Yet I have no reason to suspect you do. And I cannot, nor should I, simply assume that because you have tapped into a vein of common, shared experience with your music, that it logically follows that you know enough to be credible in speaking into the governance of my nation.
Boss you tell me that I should hold out for hope and change with the current administration. But I remember you reminding me that ‘everybody has a hungry heart’, and the reality is that they’ve gotten hungrier in many respect due to the last four years. You want me to vote to protect women’s rights and health concerns, but you said it yourself that ‘two hearts are better than one’, so why should we so easily eliminate one of them through abortion? Boss, you sang about that girl who gave up on all her dreams, simply to wait on a welfare check, and yet you seem to advocate an administration whose policies have actually made welfare more extensive and necessary.
So Boss, stop insulting my intelligence, and stick to entertaining. I find you more credible in the latter.