If I am not mistaken, the cliche is “no good deed goes unpunished”. As a matter of fact, if I’m not mistaken, I’ve used that in a blog recently. Well, let’s be perfectly honest; I do tend to repeat myself. I would like to share an experience with you and for purposes of discretion and for purposes that it’s unfair to speak ill of someone who cannot defend themselves, we’ll make this blog hypothetical. I was brought up to believe that all men and all women are created equal and I should never, ever presume that I am better than anyone ever. And to be quite clear, I still believe that. The problem with that philosophy is it leaves the door open for people with a particular agenda to take advantage of a good thought, a good intention. A psychologist one time tried to explain to me the difference between an A personality and a B personality. Artists tend to think with their hearts, and if you’re dealing with people that are interested in in their own personal agenda, you could get caught between Mount Everest and Mount Kilimanjaro and there’s a very good possibility that the spot that’s left is your heart and soul. The problem of course is there’s another cliche; “fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me”. So no matter how much I try to take my beret off and put on a business hat, invariably it doesn’t work. I guess you can’t change the DNA of the good guys, or for that matter the bad guys. The part that most make believe macho men never want to admit is how much it can hurt. You know what? It hurts. And then when you belly up to the mirror and look straight in, you damn well know whose fault it is. It’s my fault. I can’t blame anybody else. No producers, no creative directors, no corporate moguls, no buildings that are a city block long and a mile high. Ultimately I’m responsible for myself, and when I allow it to happen, I do it to myself. I think the line in the film The Godfather is “don’t take it personal” I wish I had the ability not to take it personally. So to all the ships at sea, moderate your pure heart and thought and your art, but don’t trust the s.o.b.s. Get it in writing. The world does not revolve on your sense of right and wrong. You had better learn the rules, and then you had better be ready to break them.
Pete Seeger is one of the greatest living human beings in the last millennium, there will only be one Pete Seeger.
Thank God for putting him on the planet.