Ain’t No Sin To Be Glad You’re Alive

As almost everyone on earth has noted, today Bruce writes an editorial.

I don’t think John Kerry and John Edwards have all the answers. I do believe they are sincerely interested in asking the right questions and working their way toward honest solutions. They understand that we need an administration that places a priority on fairness, curiosity, openness, humility, concern for all America’s citizens, courage and faith.

People have different notions of these values, and they live them out in different ways. I’ve tried to sing about some of them in my songs.

As usual, we’ve got the freepi chiming in that he’s just some washed-up singer, and who cares, that he’s a “Hollywood” celebrity who doesn’t have a right to an opinion about matters of national importance.

I was at a Springsteen show in Milwaukee about a year ago and about halfway through the show, when the crowd was good and drunk and roaring for “Born the USA,” he slowed it way, way down and played “Into the Fire” and then exhorted all of us to get Bush out of office and put someone in there “who knows what he’s doing.” Some people cheered, others seemed confused.

I’ll read what Bruce says and consider it seriously because I respect him as an artist. It’s not just that celebrity gives people a bigger microphone, though it certainly does do that. It also … an artist’s work, if effective, conveys how he or she sees the world. I’ve listened to a lot of Springsteen and I like the world he sees, so when he talks about it instead of singing, I’m inclined to listen. I could give a fuck what Britney Spears or Alec Baldwin think, because the one is slutty and shallow and the other has a lousy singing voice.

And it’s past time to retire the notion that certain occupations preclude your participating in American society. Julia Roberts lives here, Hollywood is in fact part of America, and if Julia wants to vote and bitch about her taxes, she has that right as a citizen. As much as I want, in the deep dark fascist corner of my mind, there to be qualifications for holding certain points of view, i.e. you must have a uterus to opine about abortion and you must have served to send others to war, I recognize that in a free society, not only is that impractical, it’s dangerous.

In that article, Bruce’s putting a view of the world out there. Listen, don’t listen. That’s your decision.

A.