Dear America, Sincerely Unhappy American
This song is called “American Woman,” by a Candadian band, The Guess Who. It was released in February 1970 during the Vietnam War. The “American woman” described in the song is actually referring to America. In the opening of the song, the lyrics are “American woman, stay away from me…” At the time, America was encouraging Canada to implement nuclear missles. This song is a protest to America because Canada does not want to be a part of the nuclear arms race. It is telling America to stay away and leave Canada alone. Suggested by the lyrics, “I got more important things to do…,” it indicates that Canada has their own issues to deal with and do not want to be bothered by America’s affairs.
This song is called “Dear Mr. President,” by Pink. This song was released on December 21, 2006. This is a protest song because it is about how dissatisfied P!nk is with former President George W. Bush’s policies. In the lyrics, she asks the president, “What do you feel when you see all the homeless on the street, who do you pray for at night before you go to sleep..” Pink implies that the pervasive problem of homelessness is in some effect the president’s fault. She also expresses her disapproval of his “No Child Left Behind” policy because children are not dumb or blind. She does not believe this policy would ensure opportunities for all children. In essence, this song is a protest of the actions President Bush enacted.
In comparing the two songs, I believe social protests have not changed much. In the 1960s and 2000s, people still voiced out their concerns and opinions through various mediums such as music and art. However, I do think that the social protests of the 1960s were more together and collaborative. There are many acts of social protests nowadays but they lack the power and focus of the 1960s.