Friday, January 22, 2016

Fall From Grace

“Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?” sang Simon & Garfunkel in February of 1968, a year of innocence and chaos. “Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you.”

In 2016 a yearning for an imaginary and idealized past found throughout American culture and American politics devolves into Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” hats, Sarah Palin incomprehensible endorsement rant and the vilifying of immigrants by every GOP presidential candidate.

“It does not seem likely that Palin (or any of the rest of the remaining ClownCar Occupants) has any clear idea who Joe DiMaggio was, or why he played an important symbolic role in a folk-rock hit released just before the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy. DiMaggio was born in California and played baseball in New York City, two places that from Palin’s point of view seem only marginally American.

“She might be perplexed to learn that the parents of this supposed American hero were immigrants who spoke little English and were classified as “enemy aliens” — potential terrorists, as we might say today — during World War II. They were prohibited from traveling more than five miles from home, and Giuseppe DiMaggio’s fishing boat was confiscated by the government.” - Andrew O’Hehir

That, at least, fits nicely with the xenophobic paranoia of Trump and the Mistress of the Wasilla Druken Barbecue Brawl.

- VK

No comments: