Wednesday, October 15, 2008

John Mellencamp and America

John Mellencamp has always been one of my favorite musicians, his working class roots and poetic style fit with my sentiment. He gave an interview to the LA Times this week describing his feelings on America. He says it in such an easy way I wanted to put it here.

"We've got to have guidelines, and strict guidelines, that are enforced by the government. That's the government's job. Now, their idea of making law is 'We're allowed to tap your phone, we're allowed to enter your house without a search and seizure.' That's wrong."

He blames the strong nationalism that clenched the country after Sept. 11.

"When people are for the country right or wrong, America right or wrong, it's a lot like Germany. Nationalism is a bad thing. And when you have a mob mentality over a country, over a swastika, over the F├╝hrer, over the Iraq war, the outcome is not going to be good."

He said he played a show in Boston two days after Sept. 11 that "frightened" him.

"I write a lot of songs that could be interpreted as big patriotic songs, but in reality they're questioning the direction the country is going," he said. "After every song in Boston, 20,000 people were going, 'USA, USA.' I thought, man. I almost asked them to stop, stop doing that. I don't like it. I don't like hearing that chant."

He decided not to and kept on singing.

"I know why they were doing it," he said. "There's a part, a small part of me that understands that we all need to rally together after a tremendous disaster. As a matter of fact, it seems to me that that's the only time this country rallies together." I have had the same experience in Boston as I am sure many people have everywhere.

He has a new album coming out soon. "Life, Death, Love and Freedom." Remember this song:

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