Hello, all. I don't have any news this week, but something has been on my mind, and since I don't have a proper blog right now, I thought this would be an appropriate place to share.
I was catching up on All Songs Considered, one of my favorite radio shows about music. The host of the show, Bob Boilen, sometimes brings musicians in as guest dj's to pick some of their favorite songs. On one particular program, which took place right before the election, he invited former Pink Floyd singer, bassist, and songwriter, Roger Waters. One of Waters's picks was an old Sam Cooke song, "A Change Is Gonna Come". It's a beautiful song about hope and perseverance, and it was released in 1964 during the Civil Rights Movement. It was a statement of belief that things would get better.
To be honest, listening to that song made me sad. It felt like we have come so far, only to go right back where we started from. I couldn't help wondering if we've accomplished anything at all.
But that's nonsense. No matter what the political situation is, we have changed on the inside. For proof, I only need to look at my own children and see how much more open and expansive their world view is than mine was at their age in the late 1980s. And this internal progress—this generational inheritance—is not something anyone can take away without our permission, no matter who's in charge.
Most people think of time as linear, which makes logical sense. Beginnings, middles, and ends are story constructs we are very familiar with. But it's kind of a rigid idea. Some people think of time as circular, which makes a certain amount of emotional sense. This feeling that everything just comes back around, over and over again, forever. Like fashion. That idea has a certain coolness about it, but ultimately, I find it a bit depressing, since it suggests that true progress is impossible.
A friend of mine once said to me, "They've both got it wrong. Time is like a spiral or a corkscrew that circles around and around, but continues to move forward."
And perhaps there's some truth to that. Election cycles feel like they forever rotate from conservative to liberal and back again. And sometimes, it might feel like we as a society are regressing. But as long as we as individuals within the community do not regress, or grow complacent, or give in to despair, it will come back around again. And we will be even better.
Anyway, here's the Sam Cooke song that got me thinking all this:
Be well, and take care of each other.