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An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked

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Dan Schatz 19 Mar 13 - 02:28 AM
GUEST,Eddie1 19 Mar 13 - 03:45 AM
Uncle Tone 19 Mar 13 - 06:20 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Mar 13 - 06:56 AM
bobad 19 Mar 13 - 07:02 AM
John MacKenzie 19 Mar 13 - 07:13 AM
GUEST,Lavengro 19 Mar 13 - 07:14 AM
bobad 19 Mar 13 - 07:21 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Mar 13 - 08:01 AM
bobad 19 Mar 13 - 08:08 AM
Dan Schatz 19 Mar 13 - 08:34 AM
GUEST,Blandiver 19 Mar 13 - 08:52 AM
Bat Goddess 19 Mar 13 - 08:57 AM
GUEST,Paddy Dzell 19 Mar 13 - 08:58 AM
GUEST,Blandiver 19 Mar 13 - 09:02 AM
GUEST,Stim 19 Mar 13 - 09:06 AM
Dan Schatz 19 Mar 13 - 09:11 AM
MGM·Lion 19 Mar 13 - 09:26 AM
GUEST 19 Mar 13 - 09:27 AM
Acorn4 19 Mar 13 - 09:40 AM
PHJim 19 Mar 13 - 09:42 AM
GUEST 19 Mar 13 - 09:43 AM
Elmore 19 Mar 13 - 09:51 AM
GUEST,Paddy Dzell 19 Mar 13 - 09:55 AM
GUEST,Blandiver 19 Mar 13 - 10:08 AM
Elmore 19 Mar 13 - 10:09 AM
MGM·Lion 19 Mar 13 - 10:11 AM
MGM·Lion 19 Mar 13 - 10:16 AM
GUEST,Stim 19 Mar 13 - 10:53 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Mar 13 - 10:57 AM
Dave the Gnome 19 Mar 13 - 11:02 AM
Wesley S 19 Mar 13 - 11:11 AM
katlaughing 19 Mar 13 - 11:18 AM
GUEST,Paddy Dzell 19 Mar 13 - 11:22 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Mar 13 - 11:23 AM
Uncle Tone 19 Mar 13 - 11:31 AM
GUEST 19 Mar 13 - 11:38 AM
GUEST,Blandiver 19 Mar 13 - 12:00 PM
Dan Schatz 19 Mar 13 - 12:20 PM
GUEST,Lavengro 19 Mar 13 - 01:16 PM
GUEST,Stim 19 Mar 13 - 01:30 PM
MGM·Lion 19 Mar 13 - 01:48 PM
Jack Campin 19 Mar 13 - 02:08 PM
pdq 19 Mar 13 - 02:18 PM
katlaughing 19 Mar 13 - 02:40 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Mar 13 - 02:40 PM
GUEST,Stim 19 Mar 13 - 02:50 PM
MGM·Lion 19 Mar 13 - 03:27 PM
Bat Goddess 19 Mar 13 - 04:01 PM
GUEST 19 Mar 13 - 05:44 PM
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Subject: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Dan Schatz
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 02:28 AM

In the wake of Michelle Shocked's now famous hate filled rant at a San Francisco concert on Sunday, I've published an open letter to her on my blog, The Song and the Sigh.

You can read the letter here.

Dan


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Eddie1
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 03:45 AM

Well said Dan.
Eddie


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Uncle Tone
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 06:20 AM

Sad. MS is obviously going through some sort of crisis.

Tone


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 06:56 AM

But if she has made a conscious decision that she is going to use the stage to espouse beliefs that are hateful and damage groups of people, she probably should not be charging money for a concert. If she wants to sit on a panel at a conference or go to a religious festival, I think in that context she should say whatever she wants. But I do think that doing it as a bait-and-switch at a concert performance is really unfair and not showing respect to people.

Hmm. Interesting in the light of the recent conversation here about a certain folk singer using his gigs to propagate his anti-abortion views. I suppose he is more subtle. Or less honest...sheesh, let me just have a think...


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: bobad
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 07:02 AM

"....the tone of the conversation became extremely religious and she began talking about the two things most important to her being Jesus Christ and freedom. Then she talked about how she had just come from a prayer meeting the night before, and the people in her prayer meeting were really worried because these are the end times, and they're the end times because Prop. 8 is going to lead to ministers marrying gay people with a rifle to the head."

That about says it all - another mind taken over.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 07:13 AM

Well Steve, if the folk singer to whom you refer, is the one I think you mean. Then I believe there is at least one venue, that refused to book them, and there may be others.
Let's face it, if people who advertise themdelves as entertainers and musicians, start to use their entertainer's platform as a political one, then I for one want my money back.
WHETHER I AGREE WITH THEM OR NOT!


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Lavengro
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 07:14 AM

Hi Dan,

I hadn't heard about this outburst until I looked at your link and was more than a little suprised by MS's comments, and they are not views that I personally share. It must be a bit of a body blow for her fans? Imagine Steve Earle giving a talk on the benefits of the Capitalist system from the stage of one of his gigs!

However, speaking as a left wing type person, I am disturbed by the fact that a gay man decides he doesn't like what he is hearing, and so uses his position to censor what is being said.

To me there seems to be a bit of a glut of this type of action by the left at the moment and it disturbs me. Why? Because someone who claims to be a liberal, and then won't allow for other opinions to be held and voiced is (IMO) the polar opposite of liberal.

Of course I don't have the full transcript of what MS said, so it may be that she stepped over the line into incitement to hatred? In which case the effect of that was already "self policed" in that people were voting with their feet. However my general point stands. It's okay to disagree, it's not okay to cut people off at the knees when you disagree with them.

Great blog by the way, I will be back.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: bobad
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 07:21 AM

There IS a difference between free speech and hate speech.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 08:01 AM

I think there's a wider issue surrounding people who achieve a public platform for quite legitimate purposes who then choose to spout about matters way beyond their purview. I mean, the sort of thing that I spout about down the pub or when I'm shouting back at the telly, only they are doing it from a platform they obtained by means unrelated to the subject their pontificating. The Archbishop of Canterbury sounding off about banks (or, indeed, all those bishops in the Lords) or Prince Big-Ears burbling on about architecture, sort of thing. "Film stars" and "pop stars" seem particularly prone to appointing themselves gurus of this, that or the other, with the connivance of the media, of course.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: bobad
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 08:08 AM

Janis Ian comments on Shocked's diatribe:

"Well, that's too bad. As a performer with 45 years of shows behind me, I've had walk-outs when I sang about interracial couples, and when I sang about AIDS, and walkouts more recently when I sang about gay marriage. I am the first to argue that I have a right to sing and speak about those things on stage, just as the audience has the right to walk out, object to the management, and ask for their money back if they feel deceived.
Our country is in large part founded on the concept of free speech - the right to speak your mind politically and socially. But there is a huge difference between "Free speech" and "Hate speech." It is sad when a talented person chooses to use that talent in the service of their own misplaced rage, and their disappointment in their own life.
I often wonder if people like this die and meet God, who will smack them upside the head and say "Did I really LOOK like I needed your help?!"
And isn't it odd to see someone who was so woman-identified turn a 360 degree like this?
Then again, 'Hell hath no fury...'"
Janis Ian


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Dan Schatz
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 08:34 AM

I always knew I liked Janis.

Dan


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Blandiver
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 08:52 AM

There IS a difference between free speech and hate speech.

Too right. Free speech engenders freedom - hate speech quite the opposite. One of the supreme ethical ironies of our time. If it were up to me I'd mute the fascists, racists & homophobes period in the name of a greater freedom.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 08:57 AM

I've pretty much ignored Michelle Shocked since a May 1996 concert at The Music Hall in Portsmouth, NH. She spent most of the concert complaining about the sound system (which had been praised by Mel Torme not long before) and the size of The Music Hall. Then she broke off mid-song ("Graffiti Limbo"), ranted against the audience for their "lack of diversity" and ran off stage to her tour bus.

She said she was disappointed in her audience. Well, the audience was left with a pretty sour taste in its collective mouth about HER.

It was HIGHLY unprofessional.

But considering her recent "performance", I'd say she's been confused about herself for a long long time.

Well written open letter, Dan.

Linn


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Paddy Dzell
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 08:58 AM

"There is a difference between free speech and hate speech"
Nope.Free speech isn't free speech if it is in any way curtailed.

This term "hate speech" simply means something that you don't agree with, or that most people don't agree with.And that's irrelevant to the concept of free speech.
Free speech means say what you like - but be prepared to argue your point and take the consequences.
We do not have freedom of speech, sadly - what we are allowed to say IS limited by what others think about it...and who gave anybody else the right to dictate what I can say?
How long before that applies to freedom of thought also?
Paddy


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Blandiver
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:02 AM

If your speech is directed to the hatred of others then I think it's only fair freedom for any reasonable person to tell you to put a sock in it.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:06 AM

I looked at the list of bookings she'd had, they were small venues. At 51, it can't have seemed like there was much of a future for her. Now, however, she's earned herself a place on the "very lucrative Christian Music" circuit, which was pretty much created by "born-again" pop stars.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Dan Schatz
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:11 AM

Artists have the right to speak their opinions - I was onstage on Saturday night singing "Everything Possible" and talking in favor of marriage equality. A few people in the audience didn't like it. But nobody walked because I did it in a way that was respectful and didn't put anybody down. What Michelle did wasn't express her personal views; it was insult her audience and speak hatred - her word. As Janis says, it's too bad.

Dan


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:26 AM

Steve ~~ I think there is a difference between bishops using their position to make political points which are not faith-related, and Prince Charles giving his opinion [which he never claims to authoritative, or more than just a personal opinion] on certain trends in modern public architecture [note that 'public'] which he finds uncongenial - as do many people for whom he is thus a spokesman. It is not as if he had, or claimed, any authority to forbid it; but he does seem to me to have been effective in modifying the more 'brutalist' trends which many people regretted seeing take over so much of previously attractive cityscapes.

"Nope.Free speech isn't free speech if it is in any way curtailed." One of those questionable 'progressive' shibboleths. Is it OK to shout 'Fire' in a crowded theatre? Or what do you think, Paddy Dzell, of the provisions against prejudiced statements aimed at stirring up racial hatreds in the various Race Relations Acts; whose invariable support by those in general most opposed to any sort of censorship in any other context has always struck me as one of the great paradoxes...


~M~


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:27 AM

I've never heard of this person


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Acorn4
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:40 AM

Seems like a bit of a John Lennon moment - only in reverse!


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: PHJim
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:42 AM

GUEST,Lavengro wrote:
"However, speaking as a left wing type person, I am disturbed by the fact that a gay man decides he doesn't like what he is hearing, and so uses his position to censor what is being said.
To me there seems to be a bit of a glut of this type of action by the left at the moment and it disturbs me. Why? Because someone who claims to be a liberal, and then won't allow for other opinions to be held and voiced is (IMO) the polar opposite of liberal."

Dan Schatz didn't censor Michelle Shocked. No one did. Neither he nor anyone else on this thread censored her. I haven't even seen anyone call for censorship.
Disagreeing with someone else's opinions or statements is not censorship. Saying that someone should not have made the statements is not preventing their free speech. Walking out on a performance that you don't want to hear isn't censorship. Refusing to hire someone or provide them with a vehicle to express opinions with which you do not agree is not denying them free speech.
Mr. Schatz, Ms. Shocked's audiences, owners of venues and radio stations and you and I have every right to disagree with Ms. Shocked's opinions and to express our disagreement. That's free speech.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:43 AM

Quite astonishing and outrageous!

Of course, I don't necessarily believe that free speech or referenced to personal beliefs, politics etc should be the sole preogative of "the left" or "the politically correct" but there is a difference when it comes to "hate filled speeches" and such similar propoganda.

I don't really follow her music these days but really enjoyed her early stuff. It was of the time and I don't intend to chuck out all her old albums although I am unlikely to go and see her in concert now.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Elmore
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:51 AM

Saw her do a set once on a "Woodsongs" telecast. Much of the set had a religious undertone, but she sure as hell could sing. I'm afraid that for some people organized religion may be hazardous to their career, and their mental health.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Paddy Dzell
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 09:55 AM

Hi M - of course it would potentially be a foolish/wrong thing to shout fire in a crowded theatre - especially if there were no fire!
But my point is that one should have the right to so shout - and then be exonerated or berated for it according to your particular point of view...and its consequences.

I don't agree with the provisions in the Acts you refer to either. People have the right to say and think what they like, even if I don't like it. If I find what you say offensive, I'll say so.

Otherwise it's all hypocisy - For example many folks wanted to ban the BNP from being allowed to put their views across because they, the BNP, are in their view fascists. Which is exactly what they accuse fascists of!

You either have freedom of speech or you don't... not some free speech (like being a little bit pregnant).

And if you decide to sacrifice some freedoms of speech for political/moral/whatever reasons fair enoug - but the problems multiply.
For example, who decides what is "acceptable" speech or , as Janis Ian put it "hate speech"? Quis custodes custodiet?

If one believes in the right to freedom of speech (and don't forget I also referred to its obvious extrapolation, freedom of thought) then that means everyone has the right to say whatever - no matter how abhorrent you think it.
And if you don't want that - then you legislate to prevent it. Welcome therefore to the world we live in.
But if we do legislate - and we have - , then we don't have free speech and so we shouldn't pretend or claim that we do.
All I'm arguing for really is a bit of intellectual honesty!


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Blandiver
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 10:08 AM

Freedom of speech is akin to freedom per se. Are we only truly free if we can go forth and violate the sanctity of another's freedom & their right to happiness? Of course, we are not. Same then with speech.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Elmore
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 10:09 AM

You can say, write or sing what you want, but you better be prepared to pay the price, as a lot of people found out during the McCarthy era.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 10:11 AM

"Free speech" has always been recognised as a relative term, of course. In some places it is, or has been, freer than in others. But has there ever been a society in which it was totally free? Sounds like a recipe for anarchy to me. But then, of course, there are anarchists ~~ or those claiming to be. But how they would fare in a community with no laws and restrictions is, as ever, a worthwhile speculation... So with absolute 'free speech' with no sort of relativism involved.

~M~


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 10:16 AM

"Dan Schatz didn't censor Michelle Shocked. No one did"
.,.

PHJ, I don't think anyone suggested that Dan did, or intended to. The accusation was surely made about the concert organiser who interrupted to put a stop to it --

...the operator of Yoshi's interrupted Shocked's performance to announce that, as a gay man, he could not allow the show to continue and she would have to leave the stage...

~M~


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 10:53 AM

Actually, Paddy, you're wrong. There is a legal distinction between free speech and hate speech, neither of which have much to do with this, actually.

In point of fact, Michelle Shocked was performing in a club(which is private property), and the owners (who, incidentally, paid her) can ask her to leave at any time for any (or no) reason. That doesn't happen very often, of course, because in a club, everyone works pretty hard to make sure that the patrons have a good time.

The bottom line is that the folks in this club paid money to enjoy themselves, and the performer stood up and said some things that were pretty much calculated to make them upset. And so it goes...


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 10:57 AM

Well, Michael, that self-appointed arbiter of architecture, Prince Big-Ears, gets to come on telly and pontificate to millions about it - because he's the Queen's lad. Not because he's an eminent architect or historian or anything. There are blokes down my pub who understand architecture a damn sight more than he likely does, yet they'll never get on the telly to tell us what theythink! Free speech uncurtailed is all fine and dandy, but millions of people get their free speech curtailed because they are stupid enough not to famous by dint of accident of birth, no more, and thereby have easy access to mass media.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 11:02 AM

A line in the above posts realy caught my eye -

Let's face it, if people who advertise themdelves as entertainers and musicians, start to use their entertainer's platform as a political one, then I for one want my money back.

Now, fair enough, this is a perfectly valid view that should be metered out with an equal hand. Unfortunately, and I am not including the writer of the line in this because I do not know him or her, there are a huge number of people who will only apply this to those who oppose their own views.

Folk music has always supported the views of the left. I cannot think of a folk club I have attended or a concert I have seen that does not include some element of a politically left wing view. Now, that suits me as it is closer to my own views than others, but we should all understand it is not the only view. If we all wanted our money back if there was any political comment where would Ewan MacColl, Peggy Seegar, Woody Guthrie, Billy Bragg, Show of Hands, John Tamms and many others be? If not in the poor-house they would certainly not be as comfortable :-(

Although I do not support Ms Shocked views, I would certainly support her right to voice them in any way she chooses. And likewise with Vin Garbutt, who, for some reason, some people seem afraid to name. To the person who would not book Vin because of his views on abortion, you are missing a damn good for no good reason. Whether you hold his views or not, he is not trying to force anyone to do anything. Just to make his views known. Pretty much like Ms Shocked seems to have done.

Has anyone has ever walked out of a concert because the performer supports gay marriage? Did it make the news if they did? How many times, at folk clubs or concerts, have you heard a plea to overthrow the government or destroy capitalism? Have you ever boo'd the artist or walked out if you have? If there is one thing that puts me off folk music it is the one-sided belief that we should all be anti-establishment, left-wing, downtrodden, working-class activists. We are not and this attitude is just as biggoted as anything reported above. But it will not put me off listening or supporting folk music because I still love it for itself.

Off the soapbox now :-)

Cheers

Dave the Gnome


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Wesley S
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 11:11 AM

A few passages after the bible calls homosexuality an abomination - it pretty much says the same thing about tattoos. I wonder if Ms Shocked plans to have hers removed?


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 11:18 AM

thanks, Dan.. i had not heard of this. it certainly is sad and thought provoking. well-wrtten, too.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Paddy Dzell
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 11:22 AM


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 11:23 AM

Well, Dave, there is certainly a debate to be had about whether we are biased against free speech that goes against our politics. A bit of head-scratching and conscience-mining there would no doubt be apt. In that other thread in which Vin Garbutt and his anti-abortion preachifying was discussed, I did mention that there are one or two other folk singers whose political side I'm definitely on but whose gigs I've avoided because of the unsubtle and anti-artistic manner in which they choose to deliver their message. I tried to illustrate what I think is a good way of making your point via the poetry of song lyrics using a passage from a Woody Guthrie song. And I said poetry, not base appeals to sentiment or emotion. When I go to a gig I want to see the artist in full flow on good form. In no way does that disallow them from putting across their points, but they would be well advised to do it artistically without jabbing their audience in the eyes. That's what we pay good money for, not to hear polemics and ranting.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Uncle Tone
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 11:31 AM

"Let's face it, if people who advertise themselves as entertainers and musicians, start to use their entertainer's platform as a political one, then I for one want my money back."

That rules out Woody then.

tone


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 11:38 AM

I agree with Dave The Gnome to extent. There does seem to be double standards as to which opinions are acceptable to be voiced at a gig or held by folkies.

Those "of the left" appear to be acceptable and hate filled rants against prominent Tories including Margaret Thatcher generally go by unchallenged. I am certainly not a supporter of her views and it is very likely that I wouldn't get along with her very well on a personal basis. however, I don't see the need for such venomous attacks.

It is quite legitimate for all people to discuss and even promote their views as long as they don't "cross the line". That applies to all sides of the political spectrum and beyond.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Blandiver
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 12:00 PM

But then, of course, there are anarchists ~~ or those claiming to be. But how they would fare in a community with no laws and restrictions is, as ever, a worthwhile speculation.

If I may quote Mikhail Bakunin on this very issue:

'I am truly free only when all human beings, men and women, are equally free. The freedom of other men, far from negating or limiting my freedom, is, on the contrary, its necessary premise and confirmation.'

This is the fundamental tenet of Anarchism; it's a high ideal for sure, but essentially an optimistic one.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Dan Schatz
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 12:20 PM

I have to admit I find it incredibly ironic to hear folkies talking about how artists shouldn't promote their political views onstage. I'm thinking that that leaves out Utah Phillips, Pete Seeger, Jean Ritchie, Tom Paxton, Woody Guthrie, Joan Baez, Janis Ian.... Let's be careful about double standards. Otherwise some of us will never work again.

At the same time, I never heard these artists attack whole groups of people. Sure, I've heard them complain vociferously about Republican policies, and maybe I've even heard some of them call a President or two some names - but not like this. Not "God hates you." So while I'll defend to my last drop of life Michelle Shocked's right to say what she did, I maintain that it's not the same as these other artists. She crossed a line.

She may have also created a dangerous situation, and I'm not sure how I feel about the venue shutting her down in the middle of the show. That may have been the safest thing to do. Offering folks their money back was definitely the right thing to do.

Dan


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Lavengro
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 01:16 PM

@bobad

I know. Hence me saying:

"Of course I don't have the full transcript of what MS said, so it may be that she stepped over the line into incitement to hatred?"

If "stepping over the line" means something to you other than going too far or exceeding the bounds, I apologise. To me it is a commonly understood turn of phrase?

@PHJim

PHJim said:

"Dan Schatz didn't censor Michelle Shocked. No one did. Neither he nor anyone else on this thread censored her. I haven't even seen anyone call for censorship."

No, I know, and nowhere did I suggest that was the case. But MtheGM has already pointed that out.

Personally I come from one of the only two ethnic groups that were murdered purely on the grounds of their ethnicity during the holocaust, so I have a bit of an issue with hate based intolerance. I have no time for people who allocate their energies to hating others on the grounds of their race, sexual orientation, disability, religious belief, age etc.

I also spend no small amount of time volunteering in organizations that promote tolerance.

I am sorry to waste space on here talking about myself rather than the topic, but I feel that there has been (by some) a misunderstanding of my post.

Lavengro


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 01:30 PM

The folk revival was pretty closely tied to "left" political movements, from the labor movement to civil rights, and the Vietnam war. A lot of times,union halls, churches and coffeehouses that were used for organizing were also used for concerts. One of the reasons that folk music never became a lasting part of popular music probably had to do with the strong political orientation of many of the performers.

The point being that, politically, you knew what you were going to get when you paid for your ticket. Michelle Shocked, however, has cultivated a "gay" audience and basically, told them off. It was obviously deliberate and planned.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 01:48 PM

Yes, Steve: I know that HRH has the luck to find himself in a position where he can promulgate his views. But I can't see anything untoward or culpable in his doing so. So ~~ he's lucky & your friends in the pub who 'know as much on the subject as he does' aren't. Nothing to stop them trying to make a political or journalistic career, say, so they can. If they would rather do something else, that's up to them. I was lucky enough [still am, part-time] to become a theatre, folk, & book critic, to have an outlet for my views. So I expressed them. Why not? Prince Charles didn't have to work so hard to establish himself in a position where he had outlets for his views: but, I repeat, why should that disqualify him from expressing them, or make them unworthy of attention? It is the quality of the views that matter, not the means by which the expresser obtained the platform to express them.

~M~


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Jack Campin
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 02:08 PM

So. Two suggested explanations:

I'm afraid that for some people organized religion may be hazardous to their career, and their mental health.

or

she's earned herself a place on the "very lucrative Christian Music" circuit, which was pretty much created by "born-again" pop stars.

It says something about this kind of religion that the only explanations we can think of for its appeal are madness and greed.

Which was Dylan in his Christian period?


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: pdq
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 02:18 PM

From a biography of Karen Michelle Johnston...


"After repeated attempts at running away, she left for good when she was 16 years old. Finishing High School in East Texas, and after four semesters at Junior Colleges in Jacksonville and Dallas, she headed for Austin, where, with single-minded determination, she put herself through the University of Texas, receiving a Bachelor's Degree in Oral Interpretation of Literature in 1983.

After graduating, she hitched her way to the West Coast, where she wound up playing guitar and mandolin in a street band. At one point she suffered a bad trip on LSD, and ended up high for three days. Wandering around in a paranoid daze, the police attempted to stop her for questioning. She panicked and ran. After a harried chase, she was taken to a mental hospital and subdued with Thorazine. A few days later her father arrived and took her home to Dallas.

From there she headed to Austin, where an old friend let her sleep in his bookstore. The shop hosted a songwriter's group, and Michelle began to participate. During her stay she experienced an LSD flashback, and, unaware of what was happening, confused the hallucinations with a spiritual vision in which she envisioned herself as a warrior in the midst of battle. Concerned friends called her father, but this time he wasn't interested in helping out. After a short stay with her mother, it was decided she would be committed to the psychiatric ward of Dallas' Baylor Hospital; the same hospital she was born in. The decision would result in a mother/daughter estrangement that would take decades to heal.

Throughout the stay she was heavily medicated, at times unable to understand where she was or why she was even there. Under the guise of occupational therapy, patients were instructed in such basic tasks as weaving yarn around Popsicle sticks and gluing beads on paper.

At a hearing to determine whether she should remain hospitalized long term, doctors diagnosed her as suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. When a psychiatrist commented that she was 'under the influence of literature,' she readily agreed with the assessment. 'I had just recently graduated from University, where my major was Oral Interpretation of Literature.' The comment smacked of anti-intellectualism; she was reading the classics, not escapist or fantasy-based stories.

A month into the stay, her mother's hospital insurance coverage ran out; 'so I was 'cured,' and they released me.'"


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 02:40 PM

lavengro, no need to apologise...it's how we get to know one another.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 02:40 PM

So, Michael, what about those bishops in the Lords who, by dint of their membership of the God Squad, get to influence the way the country is run? And please note that I didn't say we should shut Big Ears up. Nah, let him get on with it. More fool him and the more of us who know he's a fool.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 02:50 PM

Well, yes. A real winner, even back then. For those that don't know, occupational therapy is not about job training, it's about rehabilitating fine motor skills, which apparently worked, because was able to play the guitar.


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 03:27 PM

"I didn't say we should shut Big Ears up"---

"...matters way beyond their purview... Prince Big-Ears burbling on about architecture, sort of thing..."
.,,.,.
I can't see tho, Steve, that you have said anything to disqualify him from commenting. I mean, why "burbling"; you might agree or otherwise with the views he expresses, but that belittling 'burbling' is a desperately & grossly tendentiously pejorative question-beg on your part, in no way invalidating what he says, but somehow implying that he has, for reasons you sedulously avoid sharing with us, not intelligence equivalent to that of the egregiously brilliant Steve Shaw to appreciate the points at issue. You make no concession to the fact that architecture, uniquely among the arts, affects everyone because, unlike all the others, being exposed to its manifestations is not voluntary, or needing to be sought by the participant, but unavoidably visible to all. Which means that anyone has a right to comment on its effect, and those fortunate enough to have a public platform to do so should be judged by what they say, not by how they contrived to mount that platform in the first place. You may think Prince Charles a fool, though, I reiterate, you have produced not a shred of a reason for such an opinion ~~ I wonder what would be his view of your capacities and intelligence? He happens, among all else, to hold an Upper Second degree from Cambridge - and don't try to be smartarse about that: Cambridge examiners don't just give II.1s away to anyone: his brother Edward came nowhere near getting so good a result. & what may be your qualifications, just out of interest, that you appear to think give you the right to speak so slightingly of his capacities and opinions?

I have already expressed my agreement with you about bishops, who are quite a different case, so why drag them into it again?

~M~


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 04:01 PM

The point being that, politically, you knew what you were going to get when you paid for your ticket. Michelle Shocked, however, has cultivated a "gay" audience and basically, told them off. It was obviously deliberate and planned.

I don't think it was a violation of free speech to stop the concert. Her audience paid money to see ENTERTAINMENT, to hear her sing. They didn't come to be insulted, railed at, and told God probably hates them. And she was being PAID to entertain.

This is VERY different from going to see a performer whose political or social views you know -- whether you agree with them or not -- but who is going to give the audience their money's worth. Even if you don't agree with the words of a song, you can enjoy the performance.

Michelle Shocked has a history (see my comment about the 1996 performance) of being rude to her audience and unprofessional, including stopping the performance itself in the middle of a song. I agree with Dan that she is obviously not comfortable with herself and is probably even more in conflict with herself than with anyone else.

My major objection isn't with what she said (though I very much disagree with it) but that she was unprofessional and treats her audience very badly.

Linn


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Subject: RE: An Open Letter to Michelle Shocked
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Mar 13 - 05:44 PM

Don't know where I read this - might even have been on another thread?

Disagreement is acceptable
Disagreeable is not!

Eddie


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