Eric Clapton, whose fierce opposition to the vaccine mandate aspect of the COVID panicdemic is well chronicled, released a new song this past Christmas Eve that was overlooked in the hustle and hassle of the holiday season. Now that things have calmed down, it’s well worth taking into consideration. “Heart of a Child” is an achingly beautiful tune bringing powerful testimony about, and against, the human toll of COVID far separated from the virus itself.
Atop a gently rolling acoustic bed laced with Clapton’s soulful, melodic genius, the lyrics begin with stark clarity:
Put down that gun boy
Don’t blow your life away
The song continues, Clapton imploring a young man grieving in COVID-enforced isolation his own father’s (and a friend of Clapton’s) passing to remember his young daughter, not depriving her of her father via suicide. The video’s compelling visuals are shadows of life scenes cast on different walls, then erased, an unmistakable attack on the aforementioned enforced isolation.
The song highlights an aspect of COVID seldom reported by the officially approved narrative: the toll on mental health extracted by prohibiting human contact and interaction out of irrational fear. The young are especially susceptible. As detailed last year in an American Institute for Economic Research article:
A back-of-the-envelope calculation shows that, compared to 2018 and 2019 deaths per 100k, 2020 saw one extra death among those under age five, an additional 1.5 deaths among those aged 5 to 14, and a whopping 23 additional deaths among those aged 15 to 24. Overall, deaths per 100k in this age group jumped from 106.4 per 100k in 2019 to 131.7 per 100k during 2020. That’s an increase of 23% — and Covid only accounts for 1.2% of total deaths in ages 0–24 years.
Here’s a hint: the root problem isn’t stock issue teenage angst.
It is telling that those entrusted with the “science” are noticeably reticent to make definitive statements on the matter, instead clinging to New Age-ish powderpuff fluff:
Mental health implications of this ongoing pandemic might peak much beyond the infection, and suicide might add to the fatality burden. However, the resilience of humankind throughout history during any disaster has been remarkable. Positivism and hope, two salient markers of coping often arise out of collectivism, optimism and mutual support. Global strategies, collaborative research and collective responsibility might hopefully enhance the efforts against the ‘dual pandemic’ of COVID-19 and suicide.
Yeah, sure makes me want to trust the science.
A few days ago, in my story about John Ondrasik’s “Blood on My Hands,” I mentioned how the protest song is making a comeback, only this time around, conservatives are leading the charge. Eric Clapton’s “Heart of a Child” is in the same vein. While it does not directly address governmental overreach and incompetence in confronting COVID, it leaves no doubt that it addresses the human toll directly extracted by these failures. The late great Andrew Breitbart was right; politics is downstream from culture. We who are in the world but not of it should take full advantage of these gifts presented to us by artists. Spread the word; share the music. Get the message out. We can win hearts and minds via song.