The holidays are here, and we’re still at war.

The Holidays are Here (And We’re Still at War)

This song, written by Brett Dennen, is depicting the “world keeps turning” type of life that we have while our nation and country-men and -women are fighting.  This song was written during the time of the Iraq-Afghanistan war, but it isn’t actually written to condemn or support the war.

Instead, this song goes through a long list of problems we have as a nation and ultimately casting judgment on our national priorities.  Perhaps one of the strongest lines in the song is,

All hail to the captalist thief
And mourn your lost ones and covet our grief
The holidays are here and we’re still at war”

perhaps alluding to a sense of using the grief of losing loved ones as a marketing tool.

After covering the bases from politics, business, national crises and even the effects of globalization, Brett Dennen reaches his real admonishment:

“Say a prayer for the less fortunate
Prisoners and soldiers you never have met
Understand what it is they’re fighting for
Say a prayer for your enemies
Say a prayer for the victims and their families
The holidays are here and we’re still at war”

Though he makes no mention of the correctness of this war, he advocates that we should remember everyone involved, friend and enemy alike.  Though there may seem to be a thousand other things that should go on, from “hasselling” bums on the street, massive job losses, and unclean air, we should remember that perhaps those at war should be a higher priority for us as a nation.

The artistic response to war here is, in effect, irregardless of what we’re fighting for, it should be the case that everyone be in our thoughts, friend and enemy alike–especially in the holidays.

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