Wonderful Tunes Provided By Friends. Wild Tangents Provided By Me.

Hal David and Burt Bacharach wrote “What The World Needs Now Is Love” for Dionne Warwick but she initially turned the song down. Jackie DeShannon recorded it in 1965 and it became her first hit. Dionne did eventually record the song for her 1967 album “Here Where There Is Love.” This was one of my absolute all time favorite songs when I was a kid. It still is as a matter of fact.

It’s a beautiful sentiment, especially in the wake of the recent tragedy. I was watching Jon Stewart’s message about the shootings last night. “People are still basically good and crazy is rarer than you think,” he said. I completely agree except it just takes one mad man to shatter hundreds of lives.

About 3 years ago, on Valentines day a man walked into a crowded lecture hall at the university where I worked and opened fire. He killed 5 people and then he killed himself. I wasn’t scheduled to work in the room that day but I had been in that room many times before and I was in that building nearly every day of my professional career. I’m fine of course. As I said I was nowhere near the scene of the crime at that time and it would be insulting to suggest that my experience even allows me to claim “near miss” trauma. But when I hear about senseless shootings like this it does give me serious pause. Stewart was right though, there’s no way to predict or prevent these tragedies but we can’t live our lives as if they’re lurking around every corner. All we can really do is love the people most precious to us, remember the people we’ve lost, practice peace in our words and deeds, and hope to heaven the leaders we choose to follow do the same! As for me, I will listen to Jackie DeShannon and try to remember a simpler time when everything I needed to know about guns I learned from Elmer Fudd and Quinn Martin.

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