Bob Dylan: Equal Opportunity InsulterBy: Mike Tuttle - April 17, 2014
As nice as he is, if Bob Dylan thinks you suck, you’ll end up in a song.
Bob Dylan gets rave following from both sides of the political aisle. Whether it be for his songs raging against war profiteers, or his general finger-in-your face exposé of the greedy and elite, everybody seems to like Dylan.
Dylan has been going through a bit of an uproar over some statements he made in a French edition of Rolling Stone Magazine about Croats. The “public insult and inciting hate” charges against him have been dropped, with the prosecutors now turning their attention to the magazine itself. But we can be sure that the whole thing took Dylan aback. In the United States, you can say pretty much whatever you feel, as long as it is not a libelous statement against an individual, without fear of legal repercussions. Civil suits may be another matter, but here “free speech” is pretty broad.
And Dylan has made use of his freedom to call ’em as he sees ’em over the years.
In one of Dylan’s more famous tunes, he calls out rich people who ignore those with little, predicting that they could just as easily fall, finding themselves in a situation where no one comes to their aid.
Now you don’t talk so loud
Now you don’t seem so proud
About having to be scrounging for your next meal.
… nobody has ever taught you how to live on the street
And now you find out you’re gonna have to get used to it
When you got nothing, you got nothing to lose
– from “Like a Rolling Stone”
In the aforementioned “war profiteers” category, Dylan calls out those who promote and foment war because they make money from it. In one of his most bile-filled passages ever, he tells these folks exactly what he thinks of them:
And I hope that you die
And your death’ll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And I’ll watch while you’re lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I’ll stand over your grave
‘Til I’m sure that you’re dead.
– from “Masters of War”
Image via YouTube