Springsteen's anti-NYPD song tells it like it is

"It's nice to see him taking a stand"

By Salon Staff

Published June 15, 2000 7:02PM (EDT)


I'm curious: Exactly what is the problem that the NYPD has with Bruce Springsteen's new song? They shot an unarmed man 41 times in a bad shoot; then, for some reason, feel slighted when somebody writes a song about it. What were they expecting? "Forty-one shots probably wasn't enough to put him down; get me my elephant gun"? Unbelievable.

-- Darren MacLennan "

Springsteen has "'turned into some type of f***ing dirtbag,' Bob Lucente, president of the New York state chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police, told Q Online. "'He has all these good songs and everything, American flag songs and all that stuff, and now he's a floating fag. You can quote me on that.' And you might remember it when their fundraisers interrupt your dinner, too." There is nothing like presenting the officers who uphold the law as foulmouthed Neanderthals. Clearly, they are the ones that you as an unarmed citizen want pointing a gun at you. They had better start teaching profanity in the schools. We wouldn't want a wholesome, clean-minded youth to misunderstand some officer's profanity and get shot 20 or 30 times. Besides, if you're going to be vulgar, you should at least do so in proper context.

-- Robert Murray

I believe you stated in your story about Springsteen's Amadou Diallo song that Diallo had been shot 41 times. In actuality, 41 shots were fired, but a mere 19 bullets actually hit the man, who was reaching for his wallet. Perhaps the NYPD is angry at what they see as an intentional inflation of this incident and would have less of a problem if Bruce had written a song entitled "19 hits, 22 misses."

-- Terry Welch

Having attended the show, I would just like to note that while there were a smattering of boos, the overwhelming majority loved the new song and responded in glorious kind!

-- Hank Cochreane

Bruce Springsteen is one of the most powerful and influential performers of his generation. It's nice to see him taking a stand against the murder of an unarmed man by those who are meant to protect all citizens, not a select few. The comments made by Bob Lucente of the New York Chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police were childish and ignorant. He should be removed from his position as president of his chapter immediately.

-- Kevin McPherson

Salon Staff

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