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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Ideas Have Consequences

"I Hope the Russians Love Their Children Too"

Sting released this video in 1985, while the Cold War still raged and Reagan stood at the helm of the USA against Gorbachev. Watching this, I'm struck with the message: We are all human, we all have hopes and dreams, exhilarating triumphs, sins and heartbreaking tragedies. And we all come together in our circles of friends and family to love and live and die.

Sting was right about that, but not, I think, right about the point of his song: that we are all human, and therefore we shouldn't argue over how we live. No. Ideas have consequences. Why else the grand scale of rejoicing in the streets when the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, and a thousand, a million, other examples large and small of the repressive nature of the Iron Curtain? Would anyone truly choose to live as a regular citizen in that kind of society?

This world is fallen, and we as humans will never have a perfect society although I believe America does better for more people than perhaps any society previously in existence. For example, can you imagine that in 1985 a Russian could make a similar video about the Americans? Could the Russians in 1985 have protested their government, and encouraged Gorbachev to back down, without being thrown into a camp in Siberia or worse?

In one world: FREEDOM

Freedom is easy to take for granted, and difficult to maintain. Easy to lose. Let us not lose ours in this country, dear friends.



Here are Sting's lyrics:

In Europe and America, there's a growing feeling of hysteria
Conditioned to respond to all the threats
In the rhetorical speeches of the Soviets
Mr. Krushchev said we will bury you
I don't subscribe to this point of view
It would be such an ignorant thing to do
If the Russians love their children too

How can I save my little boy from Oppenheimer's deadly toy
There is no monopoly in common sense
On either side of the political fence
We share the same biology
Regardless of ideology
Believe me when I say to you
I hope the Russians love their children too

There is no historical precedent
To put the words in the mouth of the President
There's no such thing as a winnable war
It's a lie that we don't believe anymore
Mr. Reagan says we will protect you
I don't subscribe to this point of view
Believe me when I say to you
I hope the Russians love their children too

We share the same biology
Regardless of ideology
What might save us, me, and you
Is if the Russians love their children too

3 comments:

lynnrush said...

Nicely put, Amy.

KM Wilsher said...

nice post, Amy. Touching . . .

Rosslyn Elliott said...

I love Sting. :-) Even more haunting--so much so that I don't listen to it very often--is "Children's Crusade."