April 24, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

Renowned rabbi discusses the role of religion in American policy -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

UMass baseball haunted by missed opportunities in 8-5 loss -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

‘Transcendence’ a fumbling cautionary tale -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Freedom of speech for campus employees -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

‘Veep’ continues to be one of the smartest comedies around -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

‘Noah’ a sinking ship -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Letter: A response to ‘There is nothing to debate about global warming’ -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Push for punishment equality -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

UMass baseball lacks aggressiveness, misses opportunities in loss -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Police Log Friday, April 18 – Sunday, April 20, 2014 -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

UMass student spends spring break studying sustainability abroad -

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Boston Marathon 2014: A day to remember -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

UMass baseball falls short in second straight Beanpot final -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Fashion faux-pas to fend off at music festivals -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The meaning of Easter -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Is Beyoncé a ‘fashion queen’ or just The Queen? -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Protect Our Breasts holds Earth Day Yogathon -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

UMass holds annual Native American Powwow -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Israel a hub for diversity -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

UMass rowing earns five first place finishes on Friday, two on Saturday in weekend action -

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

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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