I tuned into the Democratic Convention two times on CSPAN last night and each time silver-haired conventioneers were swaying and dancing to some of the most putrid music of the last 40 years.
First I saw a perfect demographic tableau of people – black, white, red, yellow, a glorious mosaic -- all mouthing the infantile words of Sly and the Family Stone’s “Everyday People.”
And so on. And so on
And scooby dooby doo bee.
Different strokes for different folks.
That sparked a little flashback to the Forced Joy era of the early seventies when the revolution became institutionalized, when men wore big fat neckties printed with earth-toned op-art octagons and women smoked foul little cigarettes and dressed in Marimekko tarps. The days when everything was brown, yellow or avocado. The world of housing projects, 20s nostalgia, busing, caucus rooms, plaid everything, syrup rock, Free to Be You and Me mind control, AMC Pacers, Brezhnev, Roger Moore, macramé, Attica, Squeeky Fromme, the Mayaquez Crisis.
Whoa! Am I the only person who doesn’t have a visceral reaction to that misery?
I didn’t just switch the channel. I flipped the main electrical switch in the house just to be safe. After a few hours to ensure that all the wattage had leaked out of the wires I turned on the television again.
This time the old fogies were holding hands and singing Blowin’ in the Wind.
Yes 'n' how many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
Yes 'n' how many times must the cannon balls fly
Before they're forever banned?
The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind
The answer is blowin' in the wind.
Christ! We’re at war with religious fanatics who cut peoples’ heads off with steak knives and then have their children act out the murder as if it were a school play and our fellow Americans are singing the anthem of boneheaded fatalist submission.
I’m all for banning cannon balls at some point, but first let’s fire everything we’ve got at the Islamofascists and throw in a few daisy cutters topped in napalm.
There will always people who choose to sing about peace instead of doing what’s necessary to secure the peace . . . that’s fine. But no one is ever going to trust them with the keys to national security any more than you would count on solar energy to power your iron lung.
This was apparently part of the intro to Jimmy Carter’s speech about restoring respect for America around the world and standing forcefully against our enemies. This of course is exactly like Gloria Steinem bragging about her relationship with Dale Earnhardt Jr or Konstantin Chernenko pumping up the crowd with his infectious enthusiasm.
So far the Democrats are making a great case for ignoring the present, deferring the future and all walking hand in hand back to the warm comfort of the past.
I don’t blame them. The future is uncertain, dangerous and challenging. It's particularly challenging to all the unquestionable beliefs that have encrusted the Democratic Party over the past forty years – multiculturalism, agnosticism, moral relativism, pacifism, socialism.
These dogmas are the only lasting remnants of that post-sixties Golden Age (well, more like an orange and chestnut brown age) when all the political left fought for appeared to come true – the Vietnam War was over, the race riots were over, Nixon was humiliated, women could wear pants.
Today those victories are under direct attack by medieval holy warriors who hate women, homosexuals, Jews, Christians, Buddhists, most Muslims, and just about everyone else and are eager to martyr themselves in order to cleanse the earth of all non-believers.
What’s blowin’ in the wind? How about the smell of 3,000+ charred and pulverized innocent people who showed up for work one Tuesday morning.
How would the Democrats protect the rest of us from attack by Islamic suicide bombers? With more funding for Head Start? With more women in mid-level positions at the EPA?
With a deeper understanding of the concerns of Muslim fanatics?
Sadly, the dogma of the sixties has nothing to tell us about countering violent religious hatred. That can be a frightening and certainly disorienting realization. Too frightening for most of the delegates at the Democrat Convention who would rather dream about the past than confront the future.
Sad to say, but George Bush may be the only person who can make the world safe for Kumbaya jamborees.