Jeffers
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Updated.
Given the rise in bigotry and fascism, the increasing political imposition by Theocrats, the "religious" conflicts, the crusades, and the so-called "holy wars," these songs are proving more relevant every day. But what may surprise you is that the songs were written over 30 years ago by a man who is now 76 years old. He wrote them when the seeds of conflict, division and destruction were being sown by the "religious right," by hypocrites masquerading as Christians, Jews and Muslims who believe their religion entitles them to rule. Jeffers shelved his songs in 1984 because he could see the ominous signs of the terrible things to come, and he thought he needed to offer a more comprehensive warning in writing. So he put his guitar away and he has focused on writing about religion and government ever since. But, since he is not a politician and does not speak from behind a podium or pulpit, his message (written using a pen name) has been either ignored or rejected by most people. But then, early in 2009, he felt that people might finally recognize the truth in his songs, so he released his first recording attempts. (And he also felt he had better record his songs while he still could, since his health was rapidly failing.) Due to his circumstances, he recorded the songs as a one man band, playing all the parts himself. Of course, after 26 years of not playing or singing, he was pretty rusty and his ability had waned, and he wasn't satisfied with is first efforts. But he had to settle for them because his health was worsening. (You can listen to those first attempts at http://www.soundclick.com/ttap) Then, in April 2014, feeling somewhat better with new medications for two of his worst afflictions, he was able to record these slightly improved performances, and he was then even able to make videos in December of 2014 and January of 2015. He hopes that you will recognize that the songs are very relevant now. After all, "religious" bigotry is growing, and there are more people now who have been led to believe that their religion is superior and entitles them to rule (whether it's in the name of Christianity or Judaism or Islam or another religion). So it is extremely important that all of those aggressive, theocratic people be reminded of true spiritual values that are universal and common to all religions. See, most of these songs promote such universal spiritual values, and what is important to Americans is that they are Jeffersonian in scope. Thomas Jefferson and most other Founders of America indicated that government must ensure real religious freedom by preventing Theocracy. The U.S. Constitution and especially their other personal writings clearly reveal that they knew that we cannot have real religious freedom without freedom from Theocracy and freedom from theocratic imposition by any particular religion or religious groups. Jefferson wrote: "Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between church and State." He was referring, of course, to the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and explaining its actual intent. Jefferson also wrote the following in his Autobiography, speaking of the Virginian State Constitution, which was enacted in 1776 in conjunction with the Declaration of Independence. (Virginia was the first state to adopt its own constitution, and the document was widely influential in the United States, particularly in the later establishment of the U.S. Constitution in 1787.) Jefferson wrote: “Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed by inserting ‘Jesus Christ,’ so that it would read ‘A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion,' the insertion was rejected by the great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and [Muslim], the [Hindu] and Infidel of every denomination.” -- Thomas Jefferson, Autobiography, speaking about the Virginia Constitution. These historic facts are ignored by "Christian" Dominionists who believe their religion entitles them to rule. So for the last 32 years right-wing Theocrats in America have ignored the truth, and they violate Article 6 and the 1st Amendment of the Constitution with impunity, to the point where our religious freedom is in grave danger. The Jeffersonian "wall" has been very badly eroded to the point where being a so-called "Christian" is a de facto litmus test for holding political office -- which is absolutely contrary to the intent of America's Founders and violates Article 6 of the Constitution. Now, J.J. Jeffers wrote and sings these songs because he understands that it's not going to get better in America or in the world until enough people realize the truth and the facts of the matter, and realize that we should celebrate our diversity and ensure that our government treats ALL religions, races, nationalities and cultures as equal. Furthermore, his beliefs are based on what he calls the Universal Divine Imperative common to all religions — which is basically that we should treat all others as we would want to be treated if we were them -- especially the poor and least of our brethren. Like Jefferson and most other Founders, Jeffers understands that government should promote the general welfare, use the common wealth for the common good, and create and maintain a true Democracy of, by and for the people -- rather than allow rule by Oligarchy and a Plutocracy of the wealthiest few. Now, you can see other videos (in addition to the one below) by clicking "Videos" on the menu to the left. He's hoping he can make better ones, if he is able. (However, his health is failing because he was severely stricken and afflicted by Polio in 1977 and has been afflicted with many other things since, the most life-threatening of which are COPD and congestive heart failure.) PERMISSION is granted, without license to play these songs on the radio and for other artists to accurately "cover" Why Fight Over a Name?, It Takes Two, The Dream Will Come True, Right Here Now, We Can Change Our World, Right Wing Preachers, and A Place to Dwell, as long as Jeffers is credited. Copyright © 1984 - 2017 J.J. Jeffers, The Try Try Again Project, and The Initiative For Universal Peace, Freedom and Justice (which has published his written message)
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