3/10/17 – Bob Dylan – Death Is Not The End – 1988 / Nick Cave – Death Is Not The End – 1996 / Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers – Straight Into Darkness – 1982

Song Of The Day

Having spent the last few posts on death, death in song, metaphorical death, philosophical death, personal death, yesterday’s shocking news of a mass shooting of innocent people at a concert in Las Vegas and the shock death of one of my musical heroes, Tom Petty, makes musing about poetic death pale into insignificance when real death comes to visit. I for one take little comfort in the yellow bearded deity patiently waiting with a nice cup of hot cocoa on the other side. If you’re shot or in the path of a hurricane, believing in a god won’t help.

Nick Cave singing Bob Dylan and turning the coda of his song into a singalong illustrates a hopeful human optimism but the victims and their families involved in this latest abomination won’t be so philosophical even if they do believe in an almighty entity. Death doesn’t listen to pleas or answer complaints, apologize for mistaken identity or explain why you were chosen early. But what you can do is delay Death’s call with human common sense – the NRA doesn’t seem to care about that.

I realized that the standpoint of the gun lobby and the freedom of the second amendment is in consideration only of themselves, their needs, their protection or perhaps their hunting agenda, their practice ranges, all sides of their argument, aggressive or benign, are about them. It’s never about us, our exposure to gun violence, our risks of being shot. We don’t want to carry guns, we want to live in a society where it’s not necessary. This last shooting was at a country music festival – people had guns and even if the shooting was coming from afar, no-one fired back, probably a good thing, no-one wants the public firing wildly with handguns at the window of a hotel. It might have stopped the shooter or it might not and at what cost to the innocents behind other windows looking out to see what was happening with bullets flying towards them. Guns don’t protect us, they encourage others to harm each other and if we all had guns as it seems the gun lobby wants, then wild west shoot outs in your local supermarket would surely cause more deaths, not less. You cannot of course stop one madman but you could stop him from getting his hands on such deadly weapons and perhaps even worse, so much ammunition.

Mixing issues doesn’t help, I know, but in my mind, conservative principles in America are far more dangerous than liberal principles in general. Outrage over which bathroom you use, what sex you are, who you choose to sleep with, which sex you marry – these things don’t matter. Your opinion on this doesn’t matter. You can fight about abortion but women should choose what to do with their own bodies, not men(mostly) and those that insist that a woman should give birth to a child in the case of rape and rape/incest are causing more pain to the society. Rape happens across the social scale but if you are in a deprived community and can’t support yourself then the pain is even greater and poverty often begets violence. Stop pushing your morality on people whilst believing in what is only an idea – the existence of a supernatural being with a rule book. The definition of murder seems clear to me, it’s not women that should be punished for the natural progression of a man’s seed mistakenly taken, it should be those that endanger society with insane laws that put everyone in danger. Stop telling us what’s He’s thinking whilst hoarding guns and condemning peoples’ personal private choices that don’t encroach on you and certainly don’t threaten your life – how can a man falling in love with another man inspire as much anger as cold blooded murder? Morality is subjective and as far as the loving heart of religion, I read recently that atheists are far more likely to be nice to Christians than the other way ’round. Let people believe what they want, be more scared if your son brings home a gun than a boyfriend.

Olivia and I am coming to America in November and in mid-December we will be in Houston and late December in Vegas, trying to take it all in – the natural disaster in Texas, the physical and emotional damage caused as friends, family members and homes were lost in Hurricane Harvey. The difference is that the tragedy in Nevada was so clearly avoidable.

Now comes the reaction from the indignant and powerful gun lobby, keeping their heads down, refusing to accept any responsibility at all. The NRA are so loud and confident, bullying even when it comes to legislation and their demands, and so quiet and mysteriously unavailable when people die. Condolences to all those that lost their lives in this senseless and avoidable massacre. If people don’t learn from this, we are all heading Straight Into Darkness. RIP TP.

When you’re sad and when you’re lonely, and you haven’t got a friend
Just remember that death is not the end
And all that you’ve held sacred, falls down and does not mend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end

When you’re standing on the crossroads that you cannot comprehend
Just remember that death is not the end
And all your dreams have vanished and you don’t know what’s up the bend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end

When the storm clouds gather ’round you, and heavy rains descend
Just remember that death is not the end
And there’s no one there to comfort you, with a helpin’ hand to lend
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end

Oh, the tree of life is growing
Where the spirit never dies
And the bright light of salvation shines
In dark and empty skies
When the cities are on fire with the burning flesh of men
Just remember that death is not the end

And you search in vain to find just one law-abiding citizen
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end
Not the end, not the end
Just remember that death is not the end

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bob_Dylan

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Cave

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Petty

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2 Responses to “3/10/17 – Bob Dylan – Death Is Not The End – 1988 / Nick Cave – Death Is Not The End – 1996 / Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers – Straight Into Darkness – 1982”

  1. DeniseD67 October 4, 2017 at 10:14 pm #

    Your words and sentiments are spot-on Marty. My heart is heavy – for both the senseless carnage unleashed in Las Vegas and the shocking and sudden death of the great Tom Petty.

    Truth be told, I am ashamed and embarrassed to be an American these days…I hold out no hopes the NRA will concede to change anything or admit any wrongdoing ever.

    After the horrific shooting in Newtown, CT at Sandy Hook Elementary school where twenty 6 years olds were torn to pieces by a clearly long-troubled young man with an AR-15 Bushmaster semi-automatic weapon and our Congress wouldn’t even pass a bill for stronger background checks, it was sadly and sickeningly clear to me who really runs this country. I try not to give up hope that perhaps someday we will take back this country from these sociopaths – both in the NRA and in Congress. Talk about blood money.

    The first mass shooting I remember, happened at a McDonald’s in San Ysidro, California in 1984. I was 17 years old. With every mass shooting that has happened since I think “Surely something will change now.”

    I just turned 50 years old and nothing has changed. It is disheartening to say the least.

  2. Mr Wisdoms Whopper October 7, 2017 at 4:34 am #

    Being Australian one of the many things I’m thankful for is our gun laws. There were more gun deaths in that one sad event in Las Vegas than there have been for the whole year to date in Australia. I agree with Denise, it’s hard to ever see it changing in the U.S. particularly with Trump in charge.

    And Tom Petty. Such a shock. One band or artist I never got to see live that I wished I could have. Will be greatly missed. R.I.P.

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