Friday, November 19, 2010

The Rehabilitation of Jim Morrison

Oh no. Baby light my fire. I see they're trying to get a pardon for Jim Morrison.

And that Ray Manzarek claims that Jim never esposed himself.

Mr. Manzarek, of the Doors, said this week that concertgoers who thought they saw Morrison’s anatomy were probably experiencing “a mass hallucination.”

And that pardoning him would be late vindication for the oppression of the counterculture.

He added that the Doors and the fateful Miami concert “were not the beginning of the culture war, but that era was the beginning of the culture war: the straight versus the hip, the lovers versus the killers.”

I know that others share that  view.

Yet perhaps Manzarek's division of the world into the straight and the hip, killers and lovers, is not entirely dotty. Although the kind of profanity in which Morrison indulged is now more commonplace, so is moral disapproval of one kind or another. It is no longer clean-living teenagers who are rallying for decency, thank goodness, but there is no shortage of concerned, busy-body adults, willing and eager to take offence and to campaign for the source of that offence to be banned. Religious and moral objections to shows on stage or TV are now so ubiquitous that it is tempting to think that, in those culture wars, the straights have emerged as victors.

The moment has arrived for the lovers in government – people like Charlie Crist – to be heard. There are other scandals from our rock 'n' roll past which might be absolved by history.

But I'm not one of them. Jim Morrison doesn't need to be absolved by history. And certainly not by some crappy Florida court.

His life and his music were a rebel statement. His fans old and young love him for who he was. The lovers will always beat the killers.

And there was only one Jim...

They can stuff their pardon where the sun don't shine.

Long live the Lizard King...

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