Scrolling Headlines:

An open letter to the students of UMass -

March 24, 2017

Pat Kelsey informs UMass AD Ryan Bamford of change of heart just 35 minutes before scheduled press conference -

March 23, 2017

Past and present UMass football players participate in 2017 Pro Day Thursday -

March 23, 2017

Pat Kelsey reportedly backs down from UMass men’s basketball coaching position -

March 23, 2017

Students react to new fence around Townehouses -

March 23, 2017

‘Do You Have The Right To Do Drugs?’ debate held in Bowker Auditorium -

March 23, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse looks to build on three-game winning streak against Brown -

March 23, 2017

UMass softball riding five-game win streak into first Atlantic 10 showdown -

March 23, 2017

Sanzo: Inability to win close games has hurt UMass baseball -

March 23, 2017

Hannah Murphy scores 100th career goal in UMass women’s lacrosse 16-9 win over Harvard -

March 23, 2017

Old age does no harm to indie rock legends The Feelies -

March 23, 2017

A track-by-track breakdown of Drake’s new project -

March 23, 2017

When a president lies -

March 23, 2017

Let them eat steak, and other gender norms I hate -

March 23, 2017

Dissecting Science: Episode Two -

March 22, 2017

Holy Cross 10-run eighth inning sinks UMass baseball -

March 22, 2017

UMass students react to Spring Concert lineup -

March 22, 2017

Letter: Vote yes for Amherst -

March 22, 2017

You don’t have to walk alone -

March 22, 2017

Tyler Bogart and D.J. Smith lead UMass men’s lacrosse during three game win streak -

March 22, 2017

Are you not entertained?

This could be old news, but I just found out that the brainchild of “Gangnam Style,” Park Jae-sang (who goes by the stage name of PSY), rapped out some lyrics about killing American soldiers and their families slowly, painfully, etc. about eight years ago—source, http://www.cnn.com/2012/12/07/showbiz/psy-apology-irpt/index.html?hpt=hp_t3.  Obviously, my patriotic, all-American Facebook friends couldn’t stand for such filth directed at our most celebrated and respected heroes and heroines, and a few posted about it to express their contempt.  Hey, don’t look at me; I’m not supporting it either.  Have I seen the “Gangnam Style” video?  Of course. But neither I, nor the 912,772,943 others who have viewed it as of 12/8/12, had to hand over any cash to do that (maybe we had to sit through an ad, but thirty seconds of my time is eight cents before state and federal taxes—source: Microsoft calculator and bad modeling based on pay per hour and not pay per week).

But: here I am, writing about what could be (or not, does anyone care?) the hottest new moral crisis of the season, and somebody may want background as to when the, clearly not clairvoyant, PSY said these things.  Also, PSY is (still) performing at “Christmas in Washington” which President and First Lady Obama will (still) attend according to CNN. The U.N. Security Council’s head Ban Ki-moon praised PSY in October saying, “In this era of instability and intolerance we need to promote better understanding through the power of music” (http://www.smh.com.au/digital-life/digital-life-news/gangnam-style-gets-un-stamp-of-approval-20121010-27cbq.html).

I don’t care what PSY does or who takes a photo with him—I don’t buy his stuff and I have a hunch that the world’s premiere fighting force can handle trash talk.  If you don’t believe that, then actually, it’s you who “don’t support the troops,” because you think their courage is weak.  Some might have mental health problems or PTSD, and that’s an issue, and they like having your general support unlike, say, after the Vietnam War. In general however, they probably don’t need you protecting them from the “Gangnam Style” guy’s eight-year-old Korean diatribes.

The South Korean pop megastar said these things in 2004 after two Korean teenagers had been run over by two U.S. soldiers in South Korea in 2002. They were acquitted of negligent manslaughter by a U.S. military court.  He was performing as one of three rappers at “an anti-American” rock concert, and he specifically mentions soldiers torturing Iraqi captives, probably in reference to the Abu Ghraib scandal that broke that year.

So, we mad?  Anti-Americanism? After all the U.S. has done for the world?!  (Forced an end to WWII, held the line in Korea against the commies, rebuilding Japan after nuking it, Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe, Berlin Airlift, Moon, not starting the fire, Irsaeli-Egyptian peace accords, Furbies…)

Sure, we mad.  We don’t need to buy PSY’s music, but that doesn’t go far enough.  Obviously the world is full of ingrates, not understanding the need for our armed forces.  Let’s make these ungrateful places sweat it out on their own and conserve our beloved police force for a more important occasion. Like say, Syria, where the government has (evidently) lost its legitimacy (importantly, unlike in 1953 Iran) and where our time and effort would be better spent.  Let’s seek new ideas, new people, new markets, and quit bumpin’ “Gangnam style.”

Tom Lynch can be reached at tjlynch@student.umass.edu.

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