I love going to the Esplanade on the 4th of July, but this year they've invited a country western singer, whose songs are not only misogynistic and warmongering, but laced with hate speech.
Toby Keith has freedom of speech, but why herald hate speech in Boston on the 4th of July?
Probably the same reason Toby Keith was put on the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize concert stage and the same reason Barack Obama, who has escalated the Afghanistan War, kept the Iraq War going, and sent drones into Pakistan, won the Nobel Peace Prize.
How's this for doublespeak?: Toby Keith stands by war before peace concert
Keith’s appearance at the downtown Oslo Spektrum arena ... has been questioned by Norwegians dismayed that a performer known for a fervent pro-war anthem is playing at a show focused on peace.
Can't beat the tenacity and the gall of the war propagandists, can you?
Here are some examples of Toby Keith's hate parade:
Beer for my Horses
Grandpappy told my pappy back in my day, son
A man had to answer for the wicked that he'd done
Take all the rope in Texas
Find a tall oak tree, round up all of them bad boys
Hang them high in the street
For all the people to see
We got too many gangsters doing dirty deeds
too much corruption and crime in the streets
Toby Keith's Pro-Lynching Publicity Tour Hits Colbert, CBS and More, Max Blumenthal, Huffpo, July 29, 2008.
During the days when Toby Keith's "Grandpappy" stalked the Jim Crow South, lynching was an institutional method of terror employed against blacks to maintain white supremacy. According to the Tuskegee Institute, between the years 1882 and 1951, 3,437 African-Americans were lynched in the United States, mostly in the heart of Dixie. Felonious assault and rape (read: corrupting "the flower of white womanhood") were the two most frequent justifications for lynch mob actions.
Georgia was ground zero for lynch mob activity. Though most of the Peach State's victims were black, one of its most high-profile hangings claimed the life of a Jew, Leo Frank. Frank, a college-educated Northerner, was wrongly convicted in 1913 of murdering a 13-year-old girl after a show trial in which his prosecutor portrayed him to a grand jury as a bisexual pervert. Before the trial, one juror remarked, "If I get on that jury, I'll hang that Jew for sure."
A crowd gathered outside the courtroom as soon as the verdict came down. "Hang the Jew!" they chanted.
The terrifying spectacle outside the courtroom prompted Jewish families to flee Atlanta in droves. Two years later, after the governor commuted Frank's sentence, a lynch mob spirited Frank from his prison cell, dragged him into the woods and lynched him -- from "a tall oak tree," as Toby Keith sang.
How about this post 9/11 ditty? Courtesy Of The Red, White And Blue (The Angry American)
Justice will be served
And the battle will rage
This big dog will fight
When you rattle his cage
You’ll be sorry that you messed with
The U.S. of A.
'Cause we'll put a BOOT in your ass
It's the American way
After Natalie Maines, Dixie Chicks lead singer, criticized Toby Keith's song, Courtesy of the Red, White, & Blue (The Angry American),
I hate it. It's ignorant, and it makes country music sound ignorant. It targets an entire culture [Muslims]- and not just the bad people who did bad things.
Keith responded that if she wanted to make it a feud, "I'll bury her," violent words, especially since Maines received death threats for her anti Iraq War stance and saying she was embarrassed that George W. Bush came from her home state of Texas during a London concert.
Keith further fanned the flames of his fans' fury by posting a doctored photo of Maines with Saddam Hussein as a backdrop during his "Shock'n Y'all" tour.
Isn't A Little Less Talk And A Lot More Action just the song you would like your 10 year old daughter to hear on a national holiday?
A little less talk
If you please
A lot more loving
Is what I need
Let's get on down
To the main attraction
With a little less talk
And a lot more action
Yes, just shut up, woman, and ...
This is 2010.
I was hoping that men had evolved further than this.
And then there's Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) all time favorite, Get Drunk And Be Somebody, in which average nobodies are encouraged to drive their ordinary cars with the regular Joes and drink all you want to be a somebody...
Well just average people, in an everyday bar,
driving from work in our ordinary cars,
and I like to come here with the regular Joes,
drink all you want, be the star of the star
of the show
Well all week long I'm a real nobody,
But I just punched out and its paycheck Friday,
Weekends here, good God almighty,
I'm going to get drunk and be somebody
Yeah, yeah, yeah...
Last year, the Pops 4th of July concert starred Neil Diamond, who was wonderful. I love his songs. Particularly, the Red Sox 8th inning fave, Sweet Caroline ['Sweet Caroline' revealed], that he wrote for Caroline Kennedy, inspired by an adorable photo of the first daughter next to her pony (which is why we liberals are always crying for ponies), but Toby Keith?
Who chose Toby Keith to sing at the 4th of July concert here in Boston?
Inquiring minds want to know.
I will end this diary on a happier note, during the 2007 World Series, in Boston, at a time prouder than today, July 4, 2010, with sweeter and more wholesome lyrics about hands reaching out, touching warm, and feeling so good, so good, so good!