Saturday, February 9, 2008

Shut Up & Sing

Or more precisely, 80 year old Leon Fleisher did not have the wisdom or grace to just Shut up and Play.

The Octagenarian was among 5 musicians honored recently by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Alas, one of the conditions of receiving the honor was unacceptable to him:

What made me unhappy and continues to trouble me was that I was required to attend a White House reception on the afternoon of the gala...

He goes on to describe a litany of Moonbat complaints with the "illegal war", the "torturing of prisoners", the "flagrant dismantling of environmental protections", the "shredding of the Constitution, and so forth, and thus refused to attend the reception.

He explains:

I was asked to attend all of the scheduled events and to follow the well-established protocol of silence.

While this might have made for a glamorous experience, it also presented a profound irony. Turning a blind eye to the political undercurrents of the event dismantles the very force of art in this country that the honors celebrate: the freedom, nay, the obligation to express oneself honestly and without fear. Ultimately, there is no greater honor than that freedom.

What political undercurrents? What fear? It's a freaking concert and the only thing that is profoundly ironic is that an 80 year old man would behave like an infant. I have zero tolerance for idgits who think that refusing to engage those we disagree with somehow advances the cause of freedom.

Oh well, here's to empty gestures:

In the end, I decided to attend wearing a peace symbol around my neck and a purple ribbon on my lapel, at once showing support for our young men and women in the armed services and calling for their earliest return home. My family did the same, as did a number of fellow attendees who, over the weekend's various events, asked me for ribbons of their own.

All that's missing from this picture is a purple dunce hat.


Here's a photo of the ill-mannered impresario!

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