Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Memorial Day Part 3

Today, I'm going to post about a subject that is very important to me with some wonderful songs that touch on the topic of child abuse.  With all the press recently about the Catholic Church and the apparent systemic perpetuation of abuses of children, I felt it was incredibly appropriate.

Children come into this world with no choice of their own.  Even if one follows the christian tradition of "the sins of the father are visited on the children," a child is defenseless and must depend on the adults in their lives to grow and prosper, becoming adults themselves.  Sadly, there are adults who literally hold the power of live and death over these children and prey on their weakness.

Abuse can take many forms; the physical and sexual garners the most attention.  The mental torture can leave scars that, while not visible, are as long lasting and dangerous.  This first song, by Genesis, touches on the power that words can have in shaping a child's life.

Genesis - "No Son of Mine"

Being helpless to stop abuse sometimes isn't just a child's problem.  Natalie Merchant describes an adult who is witnessing abuse, but feels powerless to do anything about it.

Natalie Merchant - "What's the Matter Here?"

Children often lie about their various bruises and the torture they are going through, both because of a sense of shame and fear of further abuse.  One of my favorite artists, Suzanne Vega, describes such an encounter with a neighbor child.

Suzanne Vega - "Luka"

Though my dear friend Free posted this video last month on his wonderful blog, I feel that it's more current than ever and I have a strong desire that Sinead O'Connor needs vindication for her courageous actions more than 20 years ago.  On her infamous Saturday Night Live performance, which fairly ruined her career in the US, she attempted to bring attention to the horrors that are now too large to cover up, the abuse going on in the Catholic church.

Sinead O'Connor - "War"

Sinéad O'Connor - WAR - SNL - For more amazing video clips, click here

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