And see if I’m in some weird dream brought on by spicy food before bedtime. The BBC reports that a green cartoon frog has been added to a list of hate symbols by the Anti-Defamation League. Maybe it’s me, but I have to laugh. I’m sure someone out there used this strange cartoon for some racist point. People do that. I just grew up in the wrong era. Back in the day, liberal culture repeatedly denounced that fundamentalist tendency of playing records backwards and reading between every line to find some secret Satanic or sexual meaning.
And note, the fundamentalists so obsessing were the baddies. More than that, they were often the jokes. They were the McCarthy wannabes who would have no place in the enlightened future. No spinning records backwards in the promised liberal paradise. That would be a land were opinions were respected, diversity touted, morality never imposed and ‘live and let live for today’ would be the mantra.
That’s not to say the fundamentalists were always wrong. Some of those little quips and lines in rock songs were, in fact, pointing to the very things the fundamentalists said they were. And as the Moral Majority and the 700 Club delved deeper to find more unacceptable, hidden meaning in lyrics, the more artists were happy to slip in some double entendre, just for the listening delight of us teenagers. “Honey dripping from her pot?’ Why, that’s not vulgar. That’s just a song about…about…Winnie the Pooh’s girlfriend! Yeah, that’s the ticket. Wink, wink. Nod, nod. Ah, we had such fun with that. And always at the expense of those conservative busybody types who wouldn’t stop looking behind every tree, under every stone, and around every barrier to prove all their fears about those ‘ damned liberals’ were justified.
So it’s with some level of disbelief, and not a little bit of chuckling, that I see liberals today doing the very thing they condemned conservatives for doing all those years ago. Not that the conservatives ever stopped doing such things, it’s just odd to see them joined by their liberal counterparts. Perhaps spinning records backwards wasn’t so wrong after all. Maybe, once again, we find out it was only wrong because the wrong people were doing it for the wrong reasons.