Friday, March 18, 2011

And now a word from Faisal...

Earlier this winter term I assigned a document-based-question cribbed from an old AP U.S. History exam about the nature and manifestations of tension in the United States in the 1920s. I gave the students about 10 more documents, including a rather dense article about the concept of the "gemeinschaft," a rural society at odds with the new, urban "gesellschaft." Faisal did a bang-up job and so I asked him if I could re-print his essay for the blog audience. Take your time on this, and Faisal's work will reward you.

Faisal Akkawi
20th Century History
Tension DBQ
February 1, 2011

The culture wars that had played a large part in garnering support for World War I in Europe had, after the conclusion of the war, migrated to American soil. However, the war over American culture and values was slightly different than the one fought in Europe, which was between the conservative old order and the forward-looking liberals. In America, it was more complex. William Butler Yeats summarized, unintentionally, the struggle in American society during the 1920’s in his poem “The Second Coming” when he wrote “Things fall apart; the center cannot hold.” Although initially written to describe WWI, it can certainly be applied to post-war America, where the core of “good ol’ American values” was being torn apart by ideas from the cities and Europe. The tensions in American society during the 1920’s were a result of a fear among many Americans that their traditional way of life would be corrupted by the new customs and ideologies infiltrating the country.

America’s metaphorical ‘center’ comprised of those who adhered to Gemeinschaft society. This sector of society was white, usually Protestant, mostly small town or rural, and claimed to represent traditional America, the good prosperous America that existed before and during the war. They claimed to be the defenders of Americanism and branded anything that challenged the premises on which the built society as un-American. However, the exact definition of Americanism shifted depending on the need and the group defending it, whatever it was. The source of the tension can be traced back to the fear that spread amongst this population after the war. This fear naturally led to intolerance, which resulted in tension between this sector of society and those who espoused different views. These views were often depicted as foreign, un-American, and satanic, stemming from corrupt cities or too-liberal Europe. Communists, socialists, anarchists, unions, feminists, Jews, Catholics, immigrants, and the American intelligentsia were all at various times labeled as such. The fight for American values was often used as a cover under which other objectives could be achieved. “Business was frequently able to transfer its own fears of Bolshevism both to a broader public and to state legislators who served that public.” (Sources and Nature of Intolerance) The business community was able to sell its fear of a change in the economic system in the guise of fear for the values upon which they believed America was built, values they also believed were being challenged by those like the textile workers in the Loray Mill Strike. This fear was also propagated by politicians, such as Palmer and Hoover, who were all too ready to step in as America’s saviors. (SNI)

The center’s dissatisfaction with the way they perceived America was heading manifested itself in various ways. This tension amongst the people found outlets through various organizations. Hundreds of organizations resurged or were created in the 1920’s with the purpose of reclaiming America, such as the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU), the American Legion, the Boosters, and the Elks. These groups combatted through various means the forces pulling apart the fabric of the American center. The KKK adopted coercion and violence to achieve its goals; the WCTU operated through education and raising awareness; and the American legion funded publications and operated through the American political system. The Klan’s motto, “Native, White Protestant Supremacy” clearly states its goals, and the statement of their leader, Hiram Wesley Evans, that “We are a movement of the plain people, very weak in the matter of culture, intellectual support…a blend of various peoples of the so-called Nordic race,” (Document D) clearly states the source from which the Klan drew its support. This outlook, the close-minded approach to anything new and foreign and unfamiliar, was a great contributor to the tensions of the 1920’s. A fitting modern-day example is the Tea Party that is working to ‘take back America.’ Who took it is sometimes unclear. The Klan and the other various organizations formed at the time struggled against the tide of urbanization, religion, and the changing face of the American family.

As America became increasingly urbanized, rural America began to fear the changes that accompanied the shift to the Gesellschaft structure and the increasing mechanization of life. Ford, who was one of the greatest proponents for the rural American lifestyle, found himself soaked in the same biases as the average American. “Ford’s intense commitment to the traditional American faith led him to suspect and ultimately to detest whatever was un-American.” (The Nervous Generation: American Thought, 1917-1930) Here, Ford was caught in the same conundrum: how could progress be made if it was considered un-American because it was not part of America’s past? Ford struggled with this and resigned himself to live a hypocritical life, supporting American Gemeinschaft while supplying the means by which American Gesellschaft could progress. But the Klan had no such qualms and openly attacked “the intellectuals and liberals who held the leadership,[and] betrayed Americanism.” They fought this sector of society because they fostered a liberal environment in which ideas could grow, ideas that challenged the views previously held by the American center. This context makes artist Joseph Stella’s “The Bridge” all the more audacious (Document B). In this painting, Stella juxtaposes the sleek, modern skyscrapers with the Goth arch, a symbol of all things holy as a slight reminder that America has built for itself a new sacred mountain. Jazz was another one of these new inventions of the city. Seen as “the Devil’s Music” (New York Times), it was described as barbaric, immoral, and socially unacceptable. The fact that it was created by blacks, played in night clubs and whorehouses, provided for the intermingling between, and allowed for improvisation breaking the strict canon by which all music was written, attracted to it the spite of traditional Americanism. Jazz was viewed as an attack on American culture, and by extension America itself, just as Stella’s futurist-inspired painting could have been.

In addition to the physical changes of demographics affecting America, the internal structure of the family was also shifting. The increase in the number of women who smoke, an activity previously seen appropriate only for men, prompted the WCTU to launch a campaign amongst teachers and Sunday school workers to curb the spread of tobacco use amongst children and women. The women leading this campaign still call upon “the duty of motherhood” which “is till relegated to the women of the nation.” (Document G) The tension in society is still evident within this organization.

Although these women are actively taking a role in public life, their campaign is aimed only at women and it is based on older notions of the role of women. The increase rate of divorce and the decrease in the rate of marriage in the 1920’s suggests that women are taking a more active role in the decision-making processes of their lives. (Document H) As it becomes more socially acceptable for women to marry late or divorce or not marry at all and as their social status becomes less dependent on how well they perform their ‘duties’ as mothers and wives, the entire fabric of the American family begins to unravel and must be re-sown to accommodate changing attitudes. As the role of women changed, so did the role of religion. One challenge to religion was the increasing size of urban areas, which are often more secular or heterogeneous in religious make up. But one of the greater challenges to religion in America was evolution. Because many churches had sought God “in the corners of darkness that have not yet seen the light of understanding,” (Finding Darwin’s God) evolution posed a threat to the religious beliefs of many. The Scopes Trial also questioned the role of religion in public education, an extension of the government. The tension arouse because members from both the religious and the scientific community believed that they contradicted each other. The defense tries to find a middle-ground by stating to the prosecution that “I am examining you on your fool ideas that no intelligent Christian on earth believes.” But an attack on one’s faith only makes one cling even more firmly, even slightly irrationally to it for fear of losing it. And as is evident, fear was the greatest motivator for tension during this decade. Fear of change, progress, all things new and foreign.

Prohibition was one reaction to reclaim America’s morality. But the superimposition of Gemeinschaft values on the entire country proved impractical, and it served as a sign that America as a whole was not too eager to return to the “good ol’ days.”
However, the depiction of the tensions throughout America in the 1920’s as between two forces pulling at each other is slightly inaccurate. The Gemeinschaft-Gesellschaft structure developed by Ferdinand Tonnies accurately conveys how many believed the battle was being fought, but the “us vs. them” view oversimplifies the complex scenario. The ideologies opposing the American center were not always working toward the same objective. There were rifts within the USA Communist Party; members of the Intelligentsia feared the militant strikers and their communist supporters; and Booker T. Washington and W. E. B. Dubois disagreed on how to best achieve racial equality. Langston Hughes, who benefitted from the programs of Dubois, wrote criticizing the values tacitly encouraged by Washington, “She [Philadelphia clubwoman] wants the artist to flatter her, to make the white world believe that all Negroes are as smug and as near white in soul as she wants to be. But, to my mind, it is the duty of the younger Negro artist to change through the force of his at that old whispering ‘I want to be white.’” (Document E)This attempt at fostering a Negro identity might not have garnered the support of the white establishment while Washington might have. Examples of these divides in the left can be seen in the novel Ragtime written by E. L. Doctorow. Booker T. Washington, Emma Goldman, Coalhouse, Evelyn Nesbit, and Freud, although all working in some way to shatter Victorian paradigms, often disagreed on the best way to shatter them and what should replace them. However, these various groups sometimes did work to achieve the same objective with different motivations. The greatest example of this cooperation of the left is the Sacco-Vanzetti Case. In a letter to his sister, Vanzetti wrote “Never in our full life could we hope to do such work for intolerance, for justice, for man’s understanding of man, as we do by accident…this last moment belongs to us—this last agony is our triumph.”(Selections from the Files on the Sacco and Vanzetti Trial)The Sacco-Vanzetti Case was exactly that, an accident. The conviction of these two men should not have happened, constitutionally, and their rise to fame was as unexpected as Vanzetti thought. But the trial of Sacco and Vanzetti occurred at a time ripe for uproar. Liberal America was looking for a cause, a symbol, and these two men provided the perfect combination of all things un-American: Italian anarchist immigrants accused of militant unionist activities in the struggle against capitalist oppression. These groups “saw in Sacco and Vanzetti an opportunity to protest all the injustices they felt were pervading society.” (Reuniting the Lost Generation: Intellectual Response to the Sacco-Vanzetti Case) These ordinary men had been transformed into symbols by those who wished to further their particular cause. This tactic is similar to what we saw with President Barack Obama in the 2008 elections. A black U.S. senator from Illinois serving his first term is turned into a symbol of hope and change because he fit the criteria for what America needed: a mixed-race minority candidate who was raised by a single mother in underprivileged circumstances. He represented what Americans believed America should be. Sacco and Vanzetti were denied all of that, and so the world rallied behind them. This trial was a manifestation of the tension between the progressive community and the system upheld by the business community and the political elite.

Throughout this time of tension and turmoil, Americans looked for bridges to connect the values of their past with the industrialized, mechanized future. Two of these Ubermenschen were Charles Lindbergh and Babe Ruth. Both were so acclaimed because of not what they did, but how they did it. Charles Lindbergh’s feat was not that he flew across the Atlantic “But because he was as clean in character as he was strong and fine in body; because he put ‘ethics’ above any desire for wealth; because he was a modest as he was courageous; and because these are the things which we honor most in life.” (Document F) Charles Lindbergh brought the core values of ‘Americanism’ and merged them with the technology that stemmed from the cities.

Similarly, Babe Ruth brought personality to an increasingly mechanized and depersonalized game. These characters brought consolation to the American populace caught between these contradictory forces. Ruth and Lindbergh showed that individual identity and morality can withstand the force of industrialization and modernization. Sister Aimee McPherson is another example of how religion and the contemporary world can coexist. Sister Aimee brought religion into the context of the modern world without tainting dogma. She “threw out the dirges and threats of Hell, replacing them with jazz hymns and promises of Glory.” (Document I) Sister Aimee ‘modernized’ Christianity while still safeguarding its integrity.

The 1920’s were a time of changing definitions. The Proun Space and installation art work by El Lissitsky challenged the definition of art. A sculpture-cum-painting that took up three walls, it hung like a painting, looked like a sculpture, but surrounded the viewer instead of allowing the viewer to circumambulate around it. What was art, socially acceptable, family, religion and its role in society, urbanization, and government? Before the 1920’s America had a reached a consensus on these issues with little deviation, but the postwar world opened America to a flood of new ideas that challenged the old ones. Naturally, these new ideas were not welcomed with open arms and tension was the ultimate result. Some of the definitions were changed; others remained in dispute, creating a culture in America where each was left unto his own. The ultimate release from tension was indifference, but the apathy-induced coma only last so long.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Did you know?

Did you know that back in high school I subscribed to an import magazine from Great Britain called “Majesty”? You may not have known that…although you think you know me. It was an expensive magazine all about the British royal family. Why did I beg for this magazine subscription? Well, I had just traveled to Europe the summer between my junior and senior year of high school with the All Ohio State Fair Youth Choir (you can guess the origin of the group from the name) and I had adored being in England. It was the summer of 1981, and Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer were about to be married. I remember being in St. Paul’s Cathedral just three weeks before this exciting event and I could hardly be contained! It was so exciting, all the history, all the glamour, all the pomp and ceremony. I wanted to get my hands on everything about the royal family. Of course, I wanted to be invited, but just as my invitation to a royal wedding seems to be lost in the mail again, the pleasure of my company was not requested! Do you remember the back of Joan Rivers’ comedy album from late 1981? It had the famed picture of the royal family at Chuck and Di’s wedding, and Joan Rivers had had herself superimposed into the picture bearing her wedding gift of a blender with a bow bigger than the hat of any of the royals.

So that fall I subscribed to “Majesty” so I could indulge my love of the royal family. Over the years I have continued an enjoyment in learning about this House of Windsor. Anyway, it would seem that I am the most eager cinephile to welcome the acclaimed film, The King’s Speech. After all, it is about one of my most abiding enjoyments (obsessions?)—that family.

However, when the movie came out this fall—I kind of held my breath when I was home in the United States—I wasn’t sure if I wanted to see it. Well, of course I wanted to see it, but I didn’t know if I wanted to see it with anyone. Moreover, I kind of hoped no one asked me if I had seen it, or what I thought of it—I just didn’t have a ready answer. I just wasn’t sure how to handle the discussion.

Why? Well, King George and I share something that neither of us particularly enjoy discussing (I know I speak of him here as if he were still alive—I am well aware he has been dead for nearly 60 years) nor know how to explain to practically anyone else. One of the stories that ran in “Majesty” that I remember, lo these nearly 30 years ago, was a story about HRH Albert, the Duke of York, and a speech he gave in the mid-1920s and about his “debilitating stammer.” I remember the phrase exactly. I remember wondering what this royal personage had thought about his speech, and if he would like the phrase, “debilitating stammer.” George and I share this phenomenon, and neither of us particularly likes talking about it. I think I avoid the subject in large part, because like Bertie, neither of us likes to think about how uncomfortable it makes other people. I know that I always wish I could just give out a card when someone meets me announcing the stutter so that then they know what is coming. So I avoided the movie when I was home, but when it won the Oscar two weeks ago tonight, I knew it was time I should see the film. But I didn’t want to see it with anybody, I just wanted to see it alone here with my bootleg DVD I can so easily get (sorry any of my blogosphere friends who get upset about that intellectual property stuff). I curled up on the couch last weekend and lost myself in the story of the King’s speech. Do you know the story of the film?

The story largely unfolds during the Great Depression, building to the compulsory rousing end in 1939 when Britain declared war on Nazi Germany, world calamities that almost don’t have a match on the urgent matter of the speech impediment of HRH Albert Frederick Arthur George, the new King George VI (played by Oscar winner Colin Firth). As a child, Albert, or Bertie as his family called him, the shy, rather sickly second son of King George V developed a stutter. As his royal duties grew more important he and his wife, Elizabeth, a steely Scottish rose, (and the mother of their daughters, Elizabeth, the future queen, and Margaret) sought ways to conquer the speech problem.

Albert meets his new speech therapist, Lionel Logue, reluctantly, and only after an assortment of public and private humiliations does he decide to continue with the sessions. In one botched effort, a Royal Court-appointed doctor instructs Albert to talk with a mouthful of marbles, a gagging endeavor that might have altered the imminent monarchical succession. As eccentric and expansive as Albert is reserved, Logue enters the movie with a flourish, insisting that they meet in his shabby-chic office and that he be permitted to call his royal client, then the Duke of York, by the informal “Bertie.” The actors who portray Albert and Logue play a symbiotic pair whose relationship gives each something he hadn’t expected, even as they develop a greater understanding of their own fears and weaknesses.

But it remains Bertie’s story, a story about suffering and enduring something that is so hard to know why it is happening. Bertie has spent his life suffering the pressure of his father, King George V to get his stutter under control: “Relax!” the old man shouts and brays at him, while trying to give him a lesson in addressing the radio microphone. His brothers mocked him for his impediment, yet as we see, he is the most conscious of his responsibility as a royal. Yet with his father aging, Bertie is required to make more public appearances and speak to audiences, something that terrifies him because of the anticipation of humiliation.

The movie opens actually with the event that I remember from that long-ago story from “Majesty.” The director and writer do a masterful job at creating suspense, the agony of the anticipation as everyone awaits his speech, in that first scene in 1925 at a stadium to the Empire about a series of sports events. Everyone around Bertie looks stricken as they plead, “Just take your time.” The director makes the radio microphone so scary looking, as scary as it must have been for Bertie, and Colin Firth is perfect here, his eyes almost bleeding with the terror he feels at any moment of potential embarrassment. As he waits on the words to come forth, Firth perfectly captures the feel of a stutterer facing the gallows or otherwise feeling doomed. It’s just talking. But it is not easy. And sometimes nothing comes out. A horse neighs with what can only feel like an expression of growing impatience. Bertie speaks. It is not his finest hour.

As I watched the film, of course I loved the film—it is a beautiful film that is only sort of about fighting a speech disability—it is about a man conquering his fears. We are too embarrassed to divulge our shortcomings to the world and most importantly to ourselves, assuming it will only invite ridicule. So in this vein, the way Firth loses his temper mostly on himself, every time he feels he can never get rid of the stutter is terrific. As I have already said, one feels his pain and anguish. He feels ashamed of himself every time his father looks at him in the eye with regret. His trauma touches your soul. Helena Bonham Carter renders a heartfelt performance as the loving wife Elizabeth who wants her husband to believe in himself and his abilities. She even tells him, “When I married you, I told myself, he stutters beautifully.”

Everyone makes it sound so simple, they all say, “Relax,” or this expert advice: “Inhale deep in your lungs Your Highness, and you will find confidence.” His wife Elizabeth asks about the marbles-in-the-mouth business and the toady doctor says, “It is the classic approach from ancient Greece. It is what Demosthenes did.” And HRH the Duchess of York quipped, “And has it worked since?” As Bertie begins to gag on the marbles, the doctor bellows, “Fight against the marbles, Your Royal Highness,” and then pleads, “A little more concentration!” Angry and helpless, Bertie spits out the marbles and spits out to Elizabeth, “Promise me no more treatments!”

When the Duchess of York first meets Lionel Logue she does not divulge who she is or who her husband is. She says, “My husband is required to speak publicly,” to which Logue says, “Perhaps he should change jobs.” Elizabeth simply says, “He can’t.”

Watching how difficult it is for Bertie to tell stories to his daughters, it reminds me all too easily how the simplest tasks can be overwhelming—going to the bank teller, a drive-through window, speaking to customer service on the phone—the simplest things, but sometimes the words don’t come out. No amount of “Take your time,” or “relax” helps. Logue puts it very well when he says, “Every stammerer feels like every conversation puts them back to square one.” Logue asks Bertie: “When did the defect start?” Bertie replies, “I can’t remember not doing it.” Logue then asks, “Do you hesitate when you think or when you talk to yourself?” Later he asks Bertie if he knows any jokes, and Bertie responds, “Timing isn’t my strong suit.”

The film's title does double duty. When Bertie assumes the throne in 1937 as George VI, Hitler is consolidating his power in Germany. A nation needs to hear from its king. This reluctant-yet-stalwart king must speak to the Empire and calm their fears. Writer and director create an expected stirring conclusion here, and Logue smiles after the speech and says to his monarch: “You still stammered on the ‘w.’” The king grinned and said, “I had to throw in a few so they knew it was me.” Evidently, as a child, writer David Seidler had a stutter. George VI became his hero. The King's Speech makes him ours as well.

Over the years I have had a number of therapists or treatments. None of them have really done any significant improvement, but here I am, in a career choice where I speak publicly every day, loving my work, but certainly knowing the pain and anguish that Bertie endured every time he spoke. I am very well aware of the supportive family that I have had. It has not been a topic of conversation very often, but I have only felt love and support from my family. Perhaps it is, as I have hoped, just not the most interesting thing about me. As I look back over it all, there have been so few, so very few times in childhood and adulthood where people treated me poorly because of it. It could have been the most “go-to” of childhood taunts and ridicules, but it never overwhelmed interpersonal dynamics. The strangest part for me, unlike Bertie, is that I love public speaking. I would love to have pursued acting, but, well, you can’t make an audience wait or wonder if the speech will come out! Bertie never enjoyed that speaking, and I do, and since I do it often, I simply have to think ahead of myself and check on the words in my brain, and see if this is a day where an L word, or an R word, or an M word, or W word, or a Cr, et cetera et cetera can make its way out fluently. Maybe the best thing my family ever did for me was what Lionel Logue did for Bertie. He says, “I am here so that my patient can have faith in their own voice and make them feel like a friend is listening.”

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Take it away Hamzeh!

In the next few days I want to share a few examples of student work. I don’t write enough in blogisodes about the great work my students do—I am always grading and assessing the work and I should take more time to celebrate their achievements. In this first example, I wanted to share the written speech that Hamzeh offered as his declamation. KA has begun an annual tradition of a declamation contest, as in the old-fashioned sense where one writes a speech and then delivers it. Deerfield Academy still maintains this tradition whereas many old schools have dropped it. Hamzeh decided he would fashion his speech after “Slam Poetry,” a genre that his English class had studied. While you do not have the benefit of watching Hamzeh deliver his declamation, you can read his words. Long-time readers of the blog will know that Hamzeh has been one of the most vibrant facets of my KA experience, I have taught him thrice, lived on the same hallway and advised him. A panel of judges deemed his declamation the best for 2010-2011. After he delivered his speech, in the back row with the teachers, there were more than a few moist eyes as we contemplated his progress and growth in these four years, not just in terms of facility with English, but his poise and decorum as he ascended the stage and mesmerized the audience. Again, more than a few commented simply, “he is such a habibi.”

Blasting Words
The bell rang, the students left like a clang
No one stayed at the class, everyone ran outside
Holding their blackberries, that every time they rang
The teacher got upset, and sometimes got mad
“What a young generation!” Yelled the teacher, “Please no slang!”
Well, that’s probably some story you are accustomed to living
Frolicking on the grass, having fun and already
Getting work done like a diligent student
You open the book, the notebook and try to look so prudent
But underneath that cover, lies the nation’s threat
It’s not about some rubber, once in a fire lit
But about the “Souar” (pictures in Arabic), that the TV perfectly spits
“I am cold, may I have the 7a66a?” asked so politely the American girl
But when approached with a guy and a “Wutz Up!?” The girl prepared for a little flattering curl
Was it a shock that was painted on her face?
Was it a moment of realization that struck her?
Was it, was it, was it…?
I think it was, and even more, for the guy said the impossible, and even more
“Oh, I see, so now you are a terrorist, Haha”
The girl stood there, taken aback
Unable to compare, those words and the smack
How bad are we portrayed? How bad are the Arabs?
Is it really our fault? Or is it that things add up?
I say it’s propaganda, do you know the Chinese panda?
Exactly, I don’t think you know, so let’s get the points jotted down and I
Would like to address, the people and the press
Will you ever oppress, an orphan or a homeless?
The same thing lies here, no difference, no changes, just the atmosphere
Do you always open your ear? And let the slander adhere
To you, are you sincere? I doubt it, you know why?
Because you got used to it, just like new-born babies cry
We live under one sky, we breathe the same air
How dare you call us terrorists, how dare?
How dare you deprive us civilization, how dare?
How dare you run away from us, how dare?
How dare you be afraid from us, how dare?
What do you mean it’s nine eleven?
When Arabs aren’t there, do you call it a heaven?
What do you mean it’s OUR fault?
Did we blow the towers? Did we rob your hours?
Do you know that the world is yours and ours?
What do you know about the Arabs? Or, let me rephrase; what do you hear about the Arabs?
Because nowadays, all you think is what you hear? The Arabs photo is like a sphinx
That is always setting there, we can do nothing, we can’t destroy it, and it just winks
As in every party you have the extremes
That will do whatever to vanish our dreams
“Hmmm, it’s a misunderstanding, it seems…”
It seems??? May be it’s the teens…
And maybe it’s the screens, which show you what it “seems”
Because it’s not only the Arabs, and it’s not only the wooden teeth
It’s not only the Vikings, the horns and the sushis
You are like little children when they swear: “a number with three digits is greater than a number squared”
Because, let’s be honest, get a square, tilt it to the side, is it a square?
Some might say yes, some might say no, some might even say “IT’S NOT EVEN FAIR.”
You know what you know, and little is what you accept
For you are the victim and they are the subject
Because, let’s be honest. A country man at Texas
Busts his time, his muscles and his flexes
Working so hard, dust on his face and his textures
Then comes a running daughter shouting with fright:
“Daddy, they blew the towers, daddy, I’m scared.”
He hugs his daughter, who looks beautiful in white
But he still bites his lips and says “It’s okay sweetie, everything will be all right.”
He knows it’s all lies, nothing is fine, and nothing is all right
What do you expect from him? Hug the person who ruined their lovely evening?
Hug the person who destroyed his nation? Hug the person who caused the people to start fleeing?
Or maybe, invite him to dinner to discuss why he committed such a violation
As soon as that took place, a connection was created
The Arabs became disgrace and the Muslims too, affiliated
It’s funny how we humans, always take the routes that make us animals
It’s not necessarily congruent, but habituation has its effects and originals
Once we hear or see something, like baby ducks, we follow it
It’s like there is nothing in this whole world that’s other than it
What is it? How did we reach the wall that we hit? Is there any way out?
You know, if we could get the TV. To permit
CeciN'est Pas Une Pipe, The Treason of Images
Before you get the creeps, about some Arab cities or villages
You’ve got to go there, for you to know there
Because what sticks to your mind is what you see, not what you hear
But misconceptions will always be there, whether we like it or not
But the change starts here, now let’s go bomb Pizza Hut!