Shut up and sing!

My wife and I wanted to spend a relaxing afternoon and get away from politics for a few hours by going to a Sunday matinee of a high-school presentation of West Side Story, one of my favorite Broadway shows. But politics reared its ugly head when at the end of the play the cast came out for curtain call and one of the leading student actors lectured the audience about how we are so divided as a nation and that we must learn to accept each other despite our differences in color, race, religion, political party, and “who we love,” leftwing code for gay.

Everything now has to do with the election of Donald Trump, from Super Bowl commercials to a production at a local high school. Because West Side Story is about warfare between Puerto Rican and white gangs in New York, that obviously reflects the situation today, when people are full of hate toward those who are different from them. And that somehow is connected with Trump’s election.

The young actor’s little speech, although obviously prepared, was heartfelt and sincere. But the truth is that I hated being lectured by a kid who is not yet old enough to vote, still lives at home with mom and dad, and has so little life experience. Like other people in entertainment and the arts, the young thespian believes that he is somehow more sensitive and has a clearer view of reality than the rest of us.

If the young man had been listening in class he wouldn’t have declared that we are more divided now than in any other time in our history. In the 1860s there was something called the Civil War, and in the 1960s the nation was divided over Vietnam. Any division now is caused by the left being angry that the victory of the unworthy Donald Trump over St. Hillary of Chappaqua has dealt a serious blow to the statist utopia they so long for. Leftists have displayed their anger by censoring free speech, blocking traffic, destroying property, and physically attacking people with whom they disagree.

Our attendance at the high-school musical came about a week or so after my wife and I had gone to see a performance by John Fogarty, the former lead singer and guitarist of the 1960s band Clearance Clearwater Revival. Earlier I had told my wife that I hoped Fogarty wouldn’t go into an anti-Trump rant. I didn’t plan to leave but would have felt uncomfortable sitting there and being forced to listen to yet another lecture by an entertainer with a microphone and unhappy about the election results. I was delighted, however, when Fogarty actually spoke very little. He did sing the anti-establishment, anti-war “Fortunate Son” but without editorial comment. It was surprising that he performed the song at all, considering the venue. It was a rodeo attended by many small-town and country folks, cowboys, ranchers, and farmers. Yet no one tried to drown out a performer with whom they might have disagreed with politically or harangue him with an unwanted lecture.

My wife and I wanted to spend a relaxing afternoon and get away from politics for a few hours by going to a Sunday matinee of a high-school presentation of West Side Story, one of my favorite Broadway shows. But politics reared its ugly head when at the end of the play the cast came out for curtain call and one of the leading student actors lectured the audience about how we are so divided as a nation and that we must learn to accept each other despite our differences in color, race, religion, political party, and “who we love,” leftwing code for gay.

Everything now has to do with the election of Donald Trump, from Super Bowl commercials to a production at a local high school. Because West Side Story is about warfare between Puerto Rican and white gangs in New York, that obviously reflects the situation today, when people are full of hate toward those who are different from them. And that somehow is connected with Trump’s election.

The young actor’s little speech, although obviously prepared, was heartfelt and sincere. But the truth is that I hated being lectured by a kid who is not yet old enough to vote, still lives at home with mom and dad, and has so little life experience. Like other people in entertainment and the arts, the young thespian believes that he is somehow more sensitive and has a clearer view of reality than the rest of us.

If the young man had been listening in class he wouldn’t have declared that we are more divided now than in any other time in our history. In the 1860s there was something called the Civil War, and in the 1960s the nation was divided over Vietnam. Any division now is caused by the left being angry that the victory of the unworthy Donald Trump over St. Hillary of Chappaqua has dealt a serious blow to the statist utopia they so long for. Leftists have displayed their anger by censoring free speech, blocking traffic, destroying property, and physically attacking people with whom they disagree.

Our attendance at the high-school musical came about a week or so after my wife and I had gone to see a performance by John Fogarty, the former lead singer and guitarist of the 1960s band Clearance Clearwater Revival. Earlier I had told my wife that I hoped Fogarty wouldn’t go into an anti-Trump rant. I didn’t plan to leave but would have felt uncomfortable sitting there and being forced to listen to yet another lecture by an entertainer with a microphone and unhappy about the election results. I was delighted, however, when Fogarty actually spoke very little. He did sing the anti-establishment, anti-war “Fortunate Son” but without editorial comment. It was surprising that he performed the song at all, considering the venue. It was a rodeo attended by many small-town and country folks, cowboys, ranchers, and farmers. Yet no one tried to drown out a performer with whom they might have disagreed with politically or harangue him with an unwanted lecture.

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