‘War is not the answer for only love can conquer hate’ ~ Marvin Gaye

Happy New Year. I hope you all had a break filled with love and rest for this year is going to be full of work and madness.

I ran out of stamps and went to the post office for new ones and remembered that there is a new Gwen Ifill stamp. My post office in East Oakland did not have the stamps which I later learned will not be issued until the end of the month but much to my delight, I saw rows and rows of Marvin Gaye’s face looking at me so I bought a bunch.

“Released in 1971, his expansive masterwork, What’s Going On, is widely considered one of the greatest recordings in this history of American popular music,” wrote the USPS.

Listening to his lyrics as I drove through Oakland, those evergreen lyrics, “War is not the answer,” cut deep into my soul as I drove past tents pitched by homeless people in Oakland. We are set to spend trillions on the machinery of war when that money could be used to build safe and affordable housing for those without homes who sadly include many veterans of this country’s seemingly endless war.

Art is a key to lifting us up and pricking our consciousness and consciences. Brother Marvin’s words that follow certainly do that and more. My Northwestern bandmate Mike McDonnell reminded me that the Gaye stamp is a Forever stamp. We all hope that one day his lyrics will be reminders of a mindlessly violent past that has ended.

marvin gaye stamp

Onward.

~ Eva

What’s Going On
Marvin Gaye, The Funk Brothers

Mother, mother
There’s too many of you crying
Brother, brother, brother
There’s far too many of you dying
You know we’ve got to find a way
To bring some lovin’ here today, eh eh
Father, father
We don’t need to escalate
You see, war is not the answer
For only love can conquer hate
You know we’ve got to find a way
To bring some lovin’ here today, oh oh oh
Picket lines and picket signs
Don’t punish me with brutality
Talk to me, so you can see
Oh, what’s going on
What’s going on
Yeah, what’s going on
Ah, what’s going on
In the mean time
Right on, baby
Right on brother
Right on babe
Mother, mother, everybody thinks we’re wrong
Oh, but who are they to judge us
Simply ’cause our hair is long
Oh, you know we’ve got to find a way
To bring some understanding here today
Oh oh oh
Picket lines and picket signs
Don’t punish me with brutality
C’mon talk to me
So you can see
What’s going on
Yeah, what’s going on
Tell me what’s going on
I’ll tell you what’s going on, ooh ooh ooh ooh
Right on baby
Right on baby

https://music.apple.com/us/album/whats-going-on/1440776527?i=524824971