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Gary Horton | Stymied but not Stopped by Those Same Old Fires

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Birth control, Ho Chi Minh, Richard Nixon back again

Moonshot, Woodstoock, Watergate, punk rock

Begin, Reagan, Palestine, terror on the airline

Ayatollah’s in Iran, Russians in Afghanistan

“Wheel of Fortune,” Sally Ride, heavy metal, suicide

Foreign debts, homeless vets, AIDS, crack, Bernie Goetz

Hypodermics on the shores, China’s under martial law

Rock and roller cola wars, I can’t take it anymore

We didn’t start the fire

It was always burning

Since the world’s been turning

We didn’t start the fire

But when we are gone

Will it still burn on, and on, and on, and on…

— Billy Joel, “We Didn’t Start The Fire”

Read through those lyrics. They’re both prophetic — and pathetic. The more things change the more they infuriatingly stay the same.

Still, women’s reproductive rights fights. Still, strongmen in China scaring us. Still, a criminal in the White House. New moonshots and Mars shots. Another presidential crime and another impeachment. Still, tussles with the mullahs in Iran. And sadly, now America’s the one stuck in Afghanistan.

More foreign debts than thought possible. More homeless vets than ever imagined. AIDS is treatable, but meth and opiates kill Americans in numbers Billy Joel never saw. Bernie Goetz is gone but white nationalist gun nuts march openly with real war weaponry in Richmond. China’s under lockdown – again, and this time it’s the corona........

© Santa Clarita Valley Signal