Bruce Springsteen to get the Presidential Medal of Freedom

The 2016 Presidential Medal of Freedom recipients – Obama’s last – is a fascinating list. Particularly look up scientists Margaret H.Hamilton (of MIT and the Apollo Space Program) and Richard Garwin (H-bomb), Grace Hopper (computer scientist, programming language pioneer and Navy Rear Admiral), and Elouise Pepion Cobell (Blackfoot elder at the center of a groundbreaking class action suit that challenged the U.S. government). And artist Maya Lin, who designed the national Vietnam Memorial when she was just 21. And former FEC chair Newton Minow, after which the S.S. Minnow on Gilligan’s Island was named, a backhanded insult. And familiar names DeNiro, Hanks, Gates, Abdul-Jabbar, Ellen DeGeneres, Cicely Tyson, and Michael Jordan.

And Bruce Springsteen. For me, the quintessential moment of the way I felt about when Barack Obama was inaugurated was the free concert the night before, bravely defying the January cold outside the Lincoln Memorial. Springsteen singing This Land is Your Land with Pete Seeger. Knowing they were going to sing all the lyrics. And knowing that both of them and our fired-up new president all understood what Woody Guthrie was really talking about when he wrote those lyrics.

I feel real loss watching this again. There was so much hope that night. This feels to me like everything we’re going to lose in 65 days. Congrats to The Boss.

Comment (1)

  1. Jay Bree

    What’s he getting it for… being an Obama hack? I guess coming from a guy that got a free Nobel prize, it’s a fitting bookend.


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