I watched the One Love Manchester benefit concert last night. Ariana Grande and her manager Scooter Braun did a great job pulling together an impressive roster so quickly. Per the NYTimes:
“Everyone put their head down and said, ‘We’re doing it for these families,’” said Mr. Braun, who booked the entire bill — Katy Perry, Pharrell Williams, Robbie Williams and Liam Gallagher of Oasis also performed — in less than 24 hours.
It was good to see people getting together to dance and sing. Terrorists attack the normalcy of our lives, trying to sow fear and distrust into society. Drawing strength by pitting tribes against one another.
In that sense, Donald Trump is a domestic terrorist and we need to continue to spend time together, in open spaces, resisting AND celebrating. Looking back to 2016, I realized I’ve been going to a lot more concerts, comedy shows, lectures and other public events since 45 was elected. Why? Partly the desire to find a few hour respite from the cacophony of whatever egregious act the administration has perpetrated and normalized. But I don’t think it’s just that, it’s not just about the distraction.
It’s about the celebration. People being brought together by an affinity – for the Warriors, for the Lore podcast, for 90s era alterna-rockers Bush (to summarize my last week and next week). To be able to look at each other and say “yeah, this is good. We’re here together.”
I wonder how mass entertainment – especially live events – have fared during periods of societal instability and friction. Do we seek comfort – not just escapism but comfort – in the shared experience of a concert or a movie? Are any of you finding your entertainment/leisure patters different post-election?