Hello everyone. It seems that amidst all the cultural and technological leaps and bounds that Americans are so proud to have made in the last century, racial integration, beating the phantom Y2K bug, better fuel economy, faster computers, etc, that things really haven't changed much.
While all the shiny, happy 9-5 work a day people are patting themselves on the back because they are eating right, going to the gym, buying the cars and alcoholic beverages that their favorite celebrities tell them to, and giving to their favorite charities, they still have no clue.
Apparently the American dream is to earn at least $50,000 a year, own a SUV and a not-quite-a-sports-car, live in a spotless neighborhood in a $300,000 house, have 1.2 perfect children, go to the same job day after day for approximately 30 years, retire, have grand children who grow up to be doctors and lawyers then be buried under the big tree in the exclusive members only cemetery.
Apparently this is also the only acceptable American dream.
Anyone who tries to be a true individual and do something different, exciting, or something which they enjoy but the shiny happies do not, is instantly persecuted for their different view.
This is supposed to be the land of the free and the home of the brave where people from all nations come to live without persecution and persue their individual goals and dreams.
Recently I myself have fallen victim to this type of persecution and I am sure that I am not alone. I'm sure there are many other musicians out there who know what I am talking about.
I have been a musician and a professional Executive Protection/Security Consultant/Investigator for years. A few years ago I decided I no longer wanted to work long ours in a dangerous profession and that being a musician is what I really wanted to do so I retired from the EP industry and started playing music full time.
I finally put an excellent band together, completed our first CD for release, and we started playing out. To make a long story short, one night the police show up in my house (they just walked in) and told us that we had to stop practicing and that if we ever played there again we would be arrested on felony Breach of Peace charges. This was at 8:30pm on a Friday night.
We then researched the law by contacting Code Enforcement who proceeded to inform us that the sound ordinance is 7:00am to 9:00pm at 70db, 60db when measured from the property line of anyone who complains, which we were well below. The deputy who responded to the original call also told us that there was no decibel meter with which to check the sound levels and that they didn't do that anyway. Code Enorcement said that was just an outright lie.
We contacted the Sheriff's Department and confronted them with this new information and they told us that even if we practice within the boundaries of the sound ordinance that if anyone called and complained, just because they didn't like the type of music, our appearance, whatever, we would all be arrested on felony Breach of Peace charges.
Defeated by unconstitutional laws and threats from the Police (who are supposed to protect our rights not stomp on them) we stopped practicing there.
A week or so later two of my neighbors approached me to inform me that they were being harassed by the woman who is the head of The Homeowners' Association (I do not live in an exclusive or gated community, just out in the county). They informed me that she had come to their houses and tried to boss them into calling the police on me and complaining that the band was still practicing there or to even just make something up because she wanted me kicked out of the neighborhood.
Keep in mind this is not a rich neighborhood with the exception of her and her little group of friends who live almost a mile away on the other side of the neighborhood. My father and I moved there because we couldn't afford to buy anywhere else. I had no income because work had become very scarce and he needs me around to take care of him as he gets older.
Anyway, now the few neighbors who have sided with the President (I was never informed of any election and did not vote for her) are harassing me and my father, calling the police with frivolous charges and the police in turn are calling our house and threatening us. So now, after years of putting my life on the line protecting these same kinds of people, I am being harassed and persecuted by them for looking different and playing a different style of music than they like. I know this is not an isolated case and it makes me wonder how many bands, how many musicians, artists and intelligent, creative people never get to realize their American Dreams because this kind of persecution by the people who are right, yet open minded.
Doc Spagna - Faustian-X
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