In the discussion thread: "(American) Democracy is as real as wrestling" - Frank Zappa [View all]
Response to whathehell (Reply #14)
Thu Jun 14, 2012, 04:51 PM
90-percent (4,668 posts)
16. in response to the above post
Let’s see here.
Zappa’s children’s education – I think he wanted them out of public school as soon as possible. I think most of his four children got High School Equivalency certificates, as he wanted them to stop attending public school as soon as it was legal. I have never heard of any Zappa kids going to private schools, or even college of any sort, for that matter.
Frank appears to have inflicted this doctrine on his children:
“Drop out before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educational system and go to the library and educate yourself, if you’ve got any guts.”
The City of Baltimore honored Zappa a few years ago with a bust at the Public Library. They seemed to have some appreciation for his advocacy of Libraries.
What did he do to change things – well, there’s the content of his songs. Trouble Comin’ Every Day, from the first Mothers album, was about the Watts Riots in L.A., and I argue is as valid and current today as it was back then. Probably even more so, given the increase of economic inequality that’s been festering since the early 70’s.
Another is Hot Plate Heaven at the Green Hotel, which is from the mid 80’s, but also speaks to present day political despair.
He went all over the country on his own dime to debate the PMRC hearings on any TV or radio show that would have him. He debated Senator John Danforth on a morning show the day of the PMRC hearings, for example. This was a put your money where your mouth is position for him as a self described “Constitutional Fundamentalist”.
He was rabidly against Reaganism and televangelists and abusive organized religions.
The crowning glory of his efforts to change the system was his voter registration efforts during his 1988 tour. He even got appointed honorary Ohio Secretary of State by Sherrod Brown during this time. Lastly, he was seriously considering running for President, but the prostate cancer scotched that possibility.
He was pretty cynical, but, have you all observed what’s going on around all of us this very moment? We are so awash in corruption within all our institutions that our very Democracy is in serious jeopardy. Cynicism is an appropriate response for these abysmal times, but, he railed against stupidity and corruption and NEVER GAVE UP. He just kept going.
You seem to know very little about what Zappa said or did over the entirety of his career and you project your own assumptions about self indulgent celebrities on him, in a very inaccurate way. He was in it for the money only to the extent that it could help him fund further projects and ideas. He wanted to create music unlike any that came before. Break all boundaries and barriers and experiment with things never tried before.
HE DID HAVE HIS SHARE OF HUMAN FOIBLES, but his ability to think gave him the self assuredness to punch his way through life in his own terms. As a frightened wage slave, I wish I had his courage and drive!
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