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Backlash Brews Over 'Anti-Military Anthem' Performed on National Mall During Veterans Concert (Poll)
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Backlash Brews Over 'Anti-Military Anthem' Performed on National Mall During Veterans Concert (Poll)

"It ain't me."

Rapper Eminem's F-bomb-laced set wasn't the only eyebrow-raising moment during Tuesday's "Concert for Valor" on the National Mall — there's some debate over whether some songs were insulting to the very U.S. servicemen and women and women the show was meant to honor.

Bruce Springsteen, Dave Grohl and Zac Brown played a cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Fortunate Son," which contains such lyrics as:

Yeah, some folks inherit star spangled eyes

Ooh, they send you down to war, Lord

And when you ask them, "How much should we give?"

Oh, they only answer, more, more, more, oh

It ain't me, it ain't me

I ain't no military son

It ain't me, it ain't me

I ain't no fortunate one

The Weekly Standard described it as an "anti-war screed, taking shots at 'the red white and blue.' It was a particularly terrible choice given that Fortunate Son is, moreover, an anti-draft song, and this concert was largely organized to honor those who volunteered to fight in Afghanistan and Iraq."

However, others were quick to point out that "Fortunate Son" can be read as a critique of class differences — the rich staying home while the poor go off to fight the wars — instead of as an "anti-military anthem."

Meanwhile, another Springsteen performed didn't spark quite as much controversy:

Springsteen played a stripped-down version of his "Born in the USA" which, as the Washington Post noted, is a very dark, critical portrayal of American society and the Vietnam War:

Born down in a dead man’s town

The first kick I took was when I hit the ground

You end up like a dog that’s been beat too much

Till you spend half your life just covering up

Born in the USA...

Got in a little hometown jam so they put a rifle in my hand

Sent me off to a foreign land to go and kill the yellow man

Born in the USA...

Come back home to the refinery

Hiring man says “son if it was up to me”

Went down to see my VA man

He said “son don’t you understand now”

Had a brother at Khe Sahn fighting off the Viet Cong

They’re still there he’s all gone

He had a woman he loved in Saigon

I got a picture of him in her arms now

Down in the shadow of penitentiary

Out by the gas fires of the refinery

I’m 10 years burning down the road

Nowhere to run ain’t got nowhere to go

Of course, some people took umbrage to both songs.

What do you think? Take the poll below and share your thoughts:

Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter

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