Sunday, April 10, 2016

With A Love Mean & True

You cannot figure out who you are 
If you don't understand where you come from, 
What were the forces that work on your life 
As a child, as a teenager, as a young man.
What part do you have to play? 
How do you empower yourself?
- Bruce Springsteen 

As a Springsteen fan whose three-quarters-of-the-way-across-the-country trip last week included taking in the Denver, Colorado stop on the the current tour, I have an incalculable amount of empathy for those fans who planned to spend this evening going down to the River in the company of Springsteen and the E Street Band - whether the affected fan is a native Carolinian or had traveled to Carolina to see the show.  

As a human being, I have an equally incalculable amount of respect for Springsteen's decision to cancel tonight's show in Greensboro, North Carolina.  As someone who makes his living as a performer, he has determined that the most effective avenue for him to be heard on the issue of North Carolina's newly-minted "Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act" (a/k/a "the Bathroom Law") is to put up by shutting up.   

If the first rule of rock and roll is that the show must go on, then Springsteen's decision serves perhaps as the exception that proves the rule.  It is a decision that has not been - and shall not be - universally well-received - and not simply by those whose investment of time and money in tonight's show has now been (forgive me) flushed.   

Inasmuch as Springsteen is a musician whose career has been defined by doing that in which he believes irrespective of whether it is popular, it is reasonable to presume that he consulted no polling data before he made this decision and he shall not consult any in the days and weeks to come to assess the manner in which he - and it - has been received. 

At the end of every hard-earned day, people find some reason to believe.  On this day, the Poet Laureate of Freehold has found his.  


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