Sunday, February 20, 2005

The Next Time It Happens

I just drove back to Charlotte from seeing family down in South Carolina, and I was thinking a lot about 9/11 on the way, probably because I was listening to Springsteen's The Rising for a good part of the way.

I was thinking this: when (rather than if) another attack such attack takes place on American soil, what are people going to think about this war in Iraq? Will they think the effort was worth it? Will they think it's had any impact upon the war on terror? I'm not trying to engage in preemptive schadenfreude here. And I don't mean to be needlessly pessimistic either. I'm just being realistic. We've gone down a road that probably only ensures that another massive attack on the United States will take place, and we've diverted a lot of energy towards Iraq that should have been focused on Al Qaeda like a laser beam.

Anyway, listening to the Boss, I noticed that on "Lonesome Day," he repeats the phrase "It's alright" over and over again like a mantra. Boy, we needed that mantra after 9/11 and we still need it's seemingly unjustified optimism now. You might also note that the redemptive theme of rising again after misfortune appears in lyrics across the whole album.

Bruce sounds like a father tending to a wounded child: "It's all right. Everything's going to be OK." Part of you knows it quite likely will not be all right. Part of you still appreciates the comforting words and the good intentions.
Hell's brewin' dark sun's on the rise
This storm'll blow through by and by
House is on fire, viper's in the grass
A little revenge and this too shall pass
This too shall pass, I'm gonna pray
Right now all I got's this lonesome day

It's alright ... It's alright ... It's alright ...
Thanks Bruce.

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