Helena Montgomery (Sweden) – For our children (single)
I didn’t think it would be long this year before Helena Montgomery turned up again in NMC. As I’ve observed previously she’s a gentle, thoughtful, philosophical type and those credentials are very visible in her songs.
This one is a little different and I’ll outline why. In her introduction to the song she says,
“A wise man once said that ‘We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.’ This is also the essence of the song’ For Our Children’ in relation to everything that’s going on in the world concerning climate change. Politicians in the Global arena need to do their share, but somewhere along the line we as individuals also need to change our ways in order for our planet to survive. For the sake of our children.”
For once I disagree with Helena, at least a little. Readers might know my position on ‘climate change’ already. I’m what is called a ‘climate sceptic’ and I’m not going to change that position on demand of any obnoxious carbon billionaire, politician, King or ‘celebritee’ that hypocritically flies to Davos alone in a private jet. I don’t think I have to say more to explain that stance?
Where I differ from Helena’s view is that while I agree that those people need to change their ways PDQ, I can’t see how I can make a difference beyond what I already do. I don’t waste food, I hang on to clothes until they fall apart, I minimise use of the car (14,000 miles in four and a half years) and I recycle everything that can be recycled in the correct ‘bin’. Many other people adopt a similar approach.
It’s pointless doing any more while China builds a new coal-fired power station every week. China doesn’t care about its children. Mao tse tung murdered up to 80 million of his own people.
And I believe it is way overdue for us to stop scaring the children to death. They’re already shell-shocked from Covid lockdowns, being bullied through ‘(un)social media’, by ‘gender issues’ they didn’t know they had, and Lord knows what else, without worrying themselves stupid that the Earth is going to burst into flames in a few years, which it patently isn’t unless Vlad presses the red button on his big golf ball, which is yet another endless, recurring nightmare for the kids. Many are paranoid wrecks.
Now I’ve got that little rant out of the way I have to admire the way Helena crafted this song. It would be very easy to allow something like this to become cloying, but she stays well away from that territory.
She presents it in the same way as some of the gentler protest songs of the 1960s/70s, an era that she’s touched on in previous songs if I remember, harking to the likes of ‘We shall overcome’; ‘The times they are a-changin’; ‘Give peace a chance’ and ‘What’s going on?’
Is it reasonable to compare it with songs of that quality and longevity? You decide. I think it is.
You could easily imagine The Seekers singing it, in a field full of sunflowers and beaming, well-scrubbed kids.
And I’ll tell you what. Because it carries a melody as well as a message someone over here will likely pick this up as an anthem for this cause.
Now you just know you have to listen to it, don’t you?
So do it!
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