The United States has changed since I was a kid. I remember when the country celebrated the bicentennial of our founding. In those days, Americans took pride in their heritage. It doesn’t seem that way anymore, particularly in pop culture. Long gone are the days of John Wayne. Now we have movies like Machete that laud illegal aliens and devalue American citizenship. Our nation’s politics and media buttress this new ideal.
The Spirit of ’76 witnessed a great American win the decathlon at the Montreal Olympics. Bruce Jenner was the pride of the nation. Every kid during that time remembers his face on boxes of Wheaties. We ate the “breakfast of champions” while watching School House Rock on Saturday mornings. Now we find out he’s a woman trapped in a man’s body. WTF is that all about?
The culture has become effeminate. Men are portrayed as predators. Many have become self-loathing she-males who constantly check their underwear wondering why God cursed them with a pair of balls.
Back in the 70’s men were proud to be men. They didn’t shave their chest and legs. I don’t recall any self-respecting man wearing onesie pajamas sipping hot chocolate and demanding free stuff from the government. That just didn’t happen.
If you go on a construction site today, chances are you’ll hear either Mexican music, or, crap that is played at dance clubs. Mind you these are big, tattooed men working at manly jobs. They are playing music you’ll hear blaring out of your prepubescent daughter’s bedroom. Now that is a sure sign the culture has changed.
Dr. Larry Schweikart, a professor of history at the University of Dayton, described how the power of rock n’ roll music changed the world. Here is an excerpt from a Carolina Journal interview:
Kokai: People will have to watch the movie to get the whole story, but tell us what was the role of rock ‘n’ roll in fighting the Iron Curtain and the Berlin Wall?
Schweikart: The first thing, and what might be surprising to many people, was it wasn’t the lyrics, because so many of them did not understand English. But what appealed to them was the freedom of rock ‘n’ roll as a musical structure. And this meant that in rock — country, jazz, blues, [too], but we focused on rock — these are all American music forms, and they start together as a group, they end together as a group, but in the middle you always have the solo.
And I discovered that was an expression of America, and Western values, that you do things together as a society, but you never lose track of the individual. The individual always gets a chance to shine. And I think that, as much as anything else, really appealed to people — that they could sense that coming through.
And, of course, there was a general freedom and rebelliousness of rock that is not there with classical music. Classical music is played the same from century to century to century, you know? And while you can have different players, and they can do it very well, they’re essentially playing what Beethoven wrote, you know, 200 years ago. Well, rock ‘n’ roll changes every single time you play it because of the solos, but also because no two players play it alike, which is why we have so much cover music
Have you noticed there aren’t solos in today’s rock and roll? What does that say about modern American culture?