Rock legend John Fogerty is sending a cease-and-desist order to President Donald Trump to stop him from using his hit song “Fortunate Son” at campaign rallies.
Fogerty is the latest in a long line of musicians furious that Trump has appropriated their songs to promote himself without permission and regardless of how much they despise him.
Trump’s use of “Fortunate Son” is bizarre because he is the kind of “fortunate son” that’s blasted in the song. It’s about how the rich and politically connected get special breaks, including dodging the draft, unlike everyone else. “I ain’t no millionaire’s son,” notes the angry lyrics in the Creedence Clearwater Revival classic.
Trump skipped out of service in Vietnam with student deferments, and a highly suspect medical claim of “bone spurs.” He once joked to shock jock Howard Stern that he fought his “own personal Vietnam” by battling to avoid sexually transmitted diseases from all the women he had slept with. “I feel like a great and very brave soldier,” he thoughtlessly boasted, with a reference to the period in which American men his age were dying in Vietnam.
It’s Trump’s rich guy dodge of service in Vietnam as he helps himself to Fogerty’s song that particularly galls the rocker — as does the fact that Trump avoids paying taxes.
“I wrote this song because, as a veteran, I was disgusted that some people were allowed to be excluded from serving our country because they had access to political and financial privilege,” Fogerty tweeted Friday. “I also wrote about wealthy people not paying their fair share of taxes.”
Trump is a “prime example of both of these issues. The fact that Mr. Trump also fans the flames of hatred, racism and fear while rewriting recent history, is even more reason to be troubled by his use of my song,” Fogerty added.
Trump, a self-proclaimed billionaire, paid only $750 in federal income taxes in both 2016 and 2017, reported The New York Times, which obtained several years of Trump’s tax returns. In 10 of the previous 15 years, he didn’t pay a penny of federal income taxes.
“I object to the President using my song, ‘Fortunate Son’ in any way for his campaign. He is using my words and my voice to portray a message that I do not endorse,” Fogerty tweeted. “Therefore, I am issuing a ‘cease and desist’ order.”
Fogerty has said he’s mystified by Trump’s use of the song because he’s exactly the kind of guy he’s skewering in the lyrics.
Trump has helped himself to music against the wishes of a list of artists, including Neil Young, Adele, Rihanna, the Rolling Stones, Aerosmith and Elton John — and Prince’s estate last year.
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