An American Reclamation Project – Bruce for Barack

Bruce Springsteen has just finished playing 3 voter registration rallies for Barack Obama in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan. Bruce spoke from his heart about the American promise (our hopes) vs the increasing distance from reality for too many people in America; and the disasters and damage of the last 8 years.  Then he spoke about the need for “someone with Senator Obama’s understanding, temperateness, deliberativeness, maturity, compassion, toughness, and faith, to help us rebuild our house once again.”

BruceEMU

Photo from the official Barack Obama Flickr page.

That we could have fallen so far from those American ideals in the past 8 years is appalling; and I see nothing in the McCain/Palin that looks any different, beyond, perhaps, more vicious attacks (which is, I guess, the only way they believe they can win).  Barack brings back the kind of idealism and hope Bruce sings about in his songs.  Developing good paying American jobs, educating all of our youth to have a chance at those jobs and to compete in science and math on a world class level.  Encouraging community service, instead of shopping. 

Bruce’s comments in Philly on Oct. 4 (from his website):

Hello Philly,

“I am glad to be here today for this voter registration drive and for Barack Obama, the next President of the United States.

“I’ve spent 35 years writing about America, its people, and the meaning of the American Promise. The Promise that was handed down to us, right here in this city from our founding fathers, with one instruction: Do your best to make these things real. Opportunity, equality, social and economic justice, a fair shake for all of our citizens, the American idea, as a positive influence, around the world for a more just and peaceful existence. These are the things that give our lives hope, shape, and meaning. They are the ties that bind us together and give us faith in our contract with one another.

“I’ve spent most of my creative life measuring the distance between that American promise and American reality. For many Americans, who are today losing their jobs, their homes, seeing their retirement funds disappear, who have no healthcare, or who have been abandoned in our inner cities. The distance between that promise and that reality has never been greater or more painful.

“I believe Senator Obama has taken the measure of that distance in his own life and in his work. I believe he understands, in his heart, the cost of that distance, in blood and suffering, in the lives of everyday Americans. I believe as president, he would work to restore that promise to so many of our fellow citizens who have justifiably lost faith in its meaning. After the disastrous administration of the past 8 years, we need someone to lead us in an American reclamation project. In my job, I travel the world, and occasionally play big stadiums, just like Senator Obama. I’ve continued to find, wherever I go, America remains a repository of people’s hopes, possibilities, and desires, and that despite the terrible erosion to our standing around the world, accomplished by our recent administration, we remain, for many, a house of dreams. One thousand George Bushes and one thousand Dick Cheneys will never be able to tear that house down.

“They will, however, be leaving office, dropping the national tragedies of Katrina, Iraq, and our financial crisis in our laps. Our sacred house of dreams has been abused, looted, and left in a terrible state of disrepair. It needs care; it needs saving, it needs defending against those who would sell it down the river for power or a quick buck. It needs strong arms, hearts, and minds. It needs someone with Senator Obama’s understanding, temperateness, deliberativeness, maturity, compassion, toughness, and faith, to help us rebuild our house once again. But most importantly, it needs us. You and me. To build that house with the generosity that is at the heart of the American spirit. A house that is truer and big enough to contain the hopes and dreams of all of our fellow citizens. That is where our future lies. We will rise or fall as a people by our ability to accomplish this task. Now I don’t know about you, but I want that dream back, I want my America back, I want my country back.

“So now is the time to stand with Barack Obama and Joe Biden, roll up our sleeves, and come on up for the rising.”


Bruce’s The Ghost of Tom Joad describes the road we have been heading down once again.  Of the people struggling to make it at the bottom as the gap between rich and poor widens to the greatest since 1929.  The people who Bruce and Barack never forgot of stopped fighting for, long before the bank failures and stock market downturn started shaking the rest of America.



The last verse, which didn’t make it to the video:

Now Tom said “Mom, wherever there’s a cop beatin’ a guy
Wherever a hungry newborn baby cries
Where there’s a fight ‘gainst the blood and hatred in the air
Look for me Mom I’ll be there
Wherever there’s somebody fightin’ for a place to stand
Or decent job or a helpin’ hand
Wherever somebody’s strugglin’ to be free
Look in their eyes Mom you’ll see me.”


We need real change.  We need real hope.


Register.  Vote.


 

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