A dear friend asked me last night if I am looking forward to the 4th. My answer: Not really. The inconsolable darkness of January 6th and 74 million Americans voting for a sociopathic racist is too powerful a daily memory. So much so that, if things go horribly wrong, this paranoid fiction writer can envision a time when January, 6th, 2021 becomes a national holiday.
So, this year more than any other I wish the 4th meant more than BBQs, fireworks (which I have always seen as a substitute for "bombs bursting in air" rather than an artful sight in the sky), "ain’t we great America" and that Americans would reflect more on what many of us once hoped the country would be, where we are now and what we are in danger of becoming in place of what we once hoped for and idealized.
Because, to re-imagine a lyric from Woody Guthrie, I ask myself daily, "Is this land still made for you and me?"
Bruce Bauman is the award-winning author of the novels And The Word Was and Broken Sleep. He'll be reading from his work-in-progress The True Story of My Fictional Life and speaking about the writing process July 12. Details here.
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Brian's Hot Dogs and Remorse Playlist
Are You Glad To Be In America ::: James Blood Ulmer
No Escape ::: The Seeds
Paint It Black ::: Gil Scott Heron
American Tune ::: Willie Nelson
I Pity The Poor Immigrant :::: Richie Havens
God Bless Amerika ::: Lil’ Wayne
Blind Willie McTell ::: Bob Dylan
Blowin’ In The Wind ::: Stevie Wonder
Time Has Come Today ::: The Chambers Brothers
This is My Country ::: Curtis Mayfield and the Impressions
America The Beautiful ::: Ray Charles
Simple Song of Freedom ::: Tim Hardin
A Change Is Gonna Come ::: Sam Cooke