Thursday, April 14, 2016

Bryan Adams. Hypocrite Extraordinaire.

One of the most famous scenes in cinema for men of my generation comes from Cool Hand Luke, possibly the hottest, sweatiest movie in history... when the Captain tells the inmates of his prison, "What we have here is failure to communicate!" No line in all of film describes modern American culture as well as this one.

The great divides in America feature entrenched camps of absolutists who either cannot or will not listen to those on the other side of the barricades. Any negotiation feels impossible and reeks of weakness, any accommodation seems like a betrayal. The biblical exhortation, Come, let us reason together has gone the way of the land line phone. A couple of examples...

Washed up 1980's Canadian rocker, Bryan Adams recently made news for the first time in over a decade by cancelling a show in Biloxi, Mississippi over that state's anti-LGBT law. While, I'm sure the fifteen people who had purchased tickets were devastated, Mr. Adams earned rave reviews for his courage from the social justice warriors of the left. 

“I cannot in good conscience perform in a state where certain people are being denied their civil rights due to their sexual orientation,” Adams wrote on his website.

The luminaries of the social justice warrior class immediately began singing Adams' praises...despite the fact that Mr. Adams' latest gig was a concert in that great bastion of tolerance for all things gay...Egypt. Apparently Mr. Adams' finely tuned "good conscience" had no problem whatsoever performing in a state that has recently taken to rounding up gay people in mass arrests. Pot, meet kettle.

But, it's not just washed up has-beens who have jumped on the boycott bandwagon. The very much not washed up Bruce Springsteen is now in the news for cancelling a sold out concert in Charlotte, North Carolina in protest of that state's new transgender bathroom law. So...Mr. Springsteen is refusing to provide his services to customers in North Carolina based on his sincerely held beliefs about sexuality and human rights. It is my view that The Boss is perfectly within his rights to boycott North Carolina. He is a free man and a businessman and can withhold his services from people willing to pay for them if he sees fit, right? Once again, his refusal has gained him wide praise from all of the beautiful people. 

But, what about the Indiana baker who refused to bake a cake for a gay wedding? She refused to provide her services from a willing customer based on her sincerely held beliefs about sexuality. For doing so, the indignant wrath of the entire progressive movement was rained down upon her, despite the fact that there were plenty of other bakers available to do the job. For concert goers in Charlotte...there's only One Boss!!

I have written in this space of my view of the Indiana case, my opinion being that just because one might not approve of gay marriage should not preclude one from baking a stinking cake. I'm just not a boycott kind of guy. However, the way the Indiana baker was treated by those who disagreed with her amounted to nothing more than bullying. Where on earth has the art of getting along gone? Why can't people agree to disagree in the arena of baked goods and 80's Rock and Roll? Why couldn't the baker have said, "Hey, thanks for choosing us to bake your cake!" Why couldn't Bruce have said, "Hey, I think your governor is a jerk for passing that bathroom law and all, but thanks for making my concert a sell out! Baby, I was born to run!" In other words, why must every encounter between people with different views have to be such a drama-queen s**t show?

Seriously Bruce? A guy from New Jersey wants to lecture the people of North Carolina about their discriminatory laws? New Jersey...home of possibly the most bribed legislature in all of the western 
world, where the number one export is New Jerseyans...you want to lecture North Carolinians about good government and human rights? Please. 

"Come, let us reason together..."