Friday, October 02, 2009

just play the f'ing music

so said the grumpy, middle-aged guy sitting in front of me when Archbishop Desmund Tutu came on the U2 360 screen to introduce the One Campaign. Talk about a groove stomper. I can't express the gratitude I felt when soon after Scott Stadium reverberated with Amazing Grace.

On the way out of the stadium, I heard someone else exclaim that they loved the music, but not all that other stuff. If by other stuff, they meant "the claw". Well I must admit that feat of engineering was strange and mystifying, and maybe I didn't love it, but it was something to behold. On the other hand, if they meant the references to social justice issues like voter protests in Iran, the Aids epidemic, the plight of Aung San Suu Kyi, starving children and environmental concerns or highlighting groups like Amnesty International, the Red Campaign and the One Campaign, then I don't get it. How can you be a fan of the music, if you are not also a fan of the message? Do you hear the call to social justice when you listen to U2?
One love, one blood, one life, you got to do what you should.
One life with each other: sisters, brothers.
One life, but we're not the same.
We get to carry each other, carry each other.
Carry on U2 and keep singing those f-ing lyrics!

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