Sunday, July 15

I'd Like to Ask You A Question

I had intentions of posting about something else entirely today, but I have a house full of sickness this weekend. (Okay, it's just one kid, but it's the biggest one, so it feels like A LOT)

This however, is a fitting end to the week's posts about Austria, for this reason. Along the route home, driving toward Holland through the hills of Germany, this song played several times on the radio. I had not heard it, nor of it, before this trip. I will tell you straight up, I think it beautiful as it captures so much, so perfectly. But I am wondering if it gets any sort of radio play in the U.S. or elsewhere. Weigh in please, and tell me what you think. How do you feel?

I give you: Dear Mr. President, by Pink. Lyrics below.



Dear Mr. President,
Come take a walk with me.
Let's pretend we're just two people and
You're not better than me.
I'd like to ask you some questions if we can speak honestly.
What do you feel when you see all the homeless on the street?
Who do you pray for at night before you go to sleep?
What do you feel when you look in the mirror?
Are you proud?
How do you sleep while the rest of us cry?
How do you dream when a mother has no chance to say goodbye?
How do you walk with your head held high?
Can you even look me in the eye
And tell me why?
Dear Mr. President,
Were you a lonely boy?
Are you a lonely boy?
Are you a lonely boy?
How can you say
No child is left behind?
We're not dumb and we're not blind.
They're all sitting in your cells
While you pave the road to hell.
What kind of father would take his own daughter's rights away?
And what kind of father might hate his own daughter if she were gay?
I can only imagine what the first lady has to say
You've come a long way from whiskey and cocaine.
How do you sleep while the rest of us cry?
How do you dream when a mother has no chance to say goodbye?
How do you walk with your head held high?
Can you even look me in the eye?
Let me tell you 'bout hard work
Minimum wage with a baby on the way
Let me tell you 'bout hard work
Rebuilding your house after the bombs took them away
Let me tell you 'bout hard work
Building a bed out of a cardboard box
Let me tell you 'bout hard work
Hard work
Hard work
You don't know nothing 'bout hard work
Hard work
Hard work
Oh, How do you sleep at night?
How do you walk with your head held high?
Dear Mr. President,
You'd never take a walk with me.
Would you?

31 comments:

  1. I bought the CD based on this song... So I know I knew the song before the CD. I think maybe it DID get play as her first single from the album, and I believe it was during the last elections. Another song from that time was Mosh, by Eminem. Now, while there are a lot of things I object to about Eminem, I do think he can be a brilliant lyricist, and this one is about folks using votes to rise up and get rid of an administration that's uncaring and harsh.
    I agree with you - I think Dear Mr. President is just gorgeous and touching. I sent it to my exchange daughters and exchange son when I made their Christmas CDs last year. I also think Pink can show enormous sensitivity, in general, through her lyrics.

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  2. Jenn, I have put your question on my blog and will let you know if anyone replies there rather than coming here to your blog. Thank you for sharing this song, which I had not heard before. Here the link:
    http://bonniesbooks.blogspot.com/2007/07/dear-mr-president.html

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  3. I've never been much a of a fan of Pink, maybe it was that one song years ago that just got seriously overplayed and stuck in my head.... but this is brilliant. What fantastic lyrics!

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  4. I've never heard this song or even heard of it. It's truly touching and important. I think it sums up how just about every American I know feels.

    In my little neck of the woods in the U.S., I don't think I could find a single person who isn't disappointed, heartbroken and a bit fearful about the way our President has misused his power. Still, I often wonder what the perception is outside our country.

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  5. Jenn, I have this comment, posted by cjh:

    Since you asked, I'll answer.

    I think the song is a self-indulgent, leftist take on reality with no quarter given for the good things that have happened. It's simplistic to the point of being silly.

    But, that's just my take on it.

    cjh

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  6. bonnie-
    Thanks, it will be interesting to see the viewpoint from your readers as well.

    But I am wondering cjh, if you could expound on the "good things" happening and tell me if you feel they overshadow the points made in the song?

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  7. Not lookin' to stir things up are ya gal? Sometimes songs like this just make me so sad. I bet money that GW has never heard this. Too bad...
    "Betterschap" to the sick ones. (End of school letdown maybe?) Stay healthy yourself. Thought-hugs!

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  8. Jenn, here's another comment, from Stephanie of Confessions of a Book-a-holic:

    Personally, I love it!! If I thought that there was even ONE GOOD thing that this president has done, I might agree with CJ's comment. But this president, who is supposed to represent THE PEOPLE, has done nothing to help this country. (Unless of course, you are in the oil business)

    Nothing good has come from this administration. Period.

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  9. Pink has performed a concert for the popular radio station Q-music in Belgium and they brought the live version of this song as their 'Christmas' single. It went straight to number 1 and has been on the top of the Belgian charts for a long time.

    I really like it.

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  10. Great song! I didn't realise that pink had such a good voice (can't say I've taken much notice of her before)

    I'd never heard that song before, thanks for that!!

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  11. I've never really payed attention to Pink so I have to agree that she has a lovely voice and sings a powerful song. Funny how it is more of a slam that the Dixie Chick's comment of a few years ago. Where are all the Bush-lovers now?

    However, I was sad to see/hear the audience yell in response to the gay rights line then the reproductive rights line. Both are important.

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  12. Hi Jenn- this is just me publicly thanking you for your support during this sad time for me. It made the sorrow a little easier to bear.
    Thank you.
    (I'll just leave the Bush topic alone. Not up for that right now!)

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  13. I haven't heard this song before. Thanks for sharing this.

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  14. I love the song. I think it hits home. I wonder if he has even heard it or cares. Great Blog today.

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  15. You're a brave, brave woman addressing politics on your blog.

    I'm just saying...

    And, no, I'm not going to comment on this post because I always swore that my writing identity would stay politics and religion free as much as possible.

    But it's really tough for me not to comment....

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  16. Wow. I didn't know that Pink was making political statements.

    I feel out of the loop.

    And for the record, he might take a walk with Pink, you know because 'the kids' might think it was cool. Or maybe they are saving that for the new Republican candidate.

    *Vomits a little*

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  17. I just have to come back and let you know that this post rocks. Not from the hipster, you-in-with-the-youngsters angle but from the caring about our world.

    Marianne - Holding the president accountible isn't "politics" - it directly impacts our lives and our futures. We hand over gazillion dollars in taxes and should have a say in how it is spent. That isn't politics - it is paying attention.

    I wish talking about politics or criticizing the President wasn't considered "brave". It is a basic right in America. When did we need to be "brave" to talk about politics?

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  18. I love this song! I don't listen to the radio much, but it's definitely on my recently played list in iTunes.

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  19. Great song. Now I'm angry and frustrated as usual. But now I'm more musically so. And SMID - you're right. If you're not angry, you're not paying attention.

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  20. Jenn, now you can read about CJ's politics and ask your question on HER blog:

    cj said...

    Nope, I didn't comment there, Bonnie. Thanks for doing so. I didn't realize I should've.

    And, as much as I want to, I'll refrain from taking the conversation any further. This is Bonnie's Books, after all.

    But, if you want to read a little on my political views, I've got another blog that covers it: www.angam.blogspot.com

    cjh

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  21. I don't think this song will get an enormous amount of air play in the good ole U S of A. It's still too "controversial" (that means "true") to be a good commercial bet. But being the non-conformist trouble-making pinko that I am, I'm going to post it on my blog, too, and if you want, I'll echo comments back here.

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  22. Jenn, not only is your post spreading to Jami's blog, but also to another of my reader's blogs:

    Psychomama posted this today:
    http://psychomamma.blogspot.com/2007/07/just-skip-this-one-if-you-are.html

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  23. bonnie-
    Thanks again for sharing the discussion at your blog. It's been interesting indeed.

    jami-
    Bring it babe! I will thoroughly enjoy hearing what your readers have to say!

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  24. Hi, I came via Bonnie's blog.

    I don't know if this song is getting radio play, because I don't listen to the radio. But I can assure you that the young Americans who spend so much time on the internet are well aware of it through youtube. Bush's approval ratings are at an extreme low by this point (though I personally have never disapproved of any living human being as much as I disapprove of him). This is also by no means the only current protest song about this administration.

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  25. Sorry, I think I worded something badly. I meant to say that I have ALWAYS disapproved strongly of Bush, but that by now, the vast majority of Americans also disapprove.

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  26. I wasn't familiar with this song so I'm really glad you put it on your site. Thanks :)

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  27. Look at you, getting things all stirred up.

    Well, I think that by now you know how I feel about Bush. This song sums it up, as do a few others.

    I drove behind someone again today (gotta love Utah) with a "Bush in '04" bumper sticker. I really felt so incredibly embarrassed for the person who is still supporting the most damaging president this country has ever had.

    And there's my two cents. But you already knew them.

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  28. Jenn -

    WOA!! Had not heard this - I copied the lyrics and plan to pass them on to all my friends (even the more conservative ones!) - I LOVE IT!!!!

    Now if only someone "important" would listen - we might be able to recover from this horrible man!

    Teresa

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  29. I have never heard this song before... but then again, I don't reaslly do popular music, and certainly not Pink.

    I like the lyrics, though.

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