From TLD, Whole Number 13 (May 3, 1996)


Sidebar to Virginia Dare's
"Dragons and giants and bears, oh my!"


Rachmaninoff smoked!



Recently a friend of mine, whom I shall call Matthew, borrowed my Wagner CDs — and quickly became captivated. In fact, he seems to have become more of a Wagnerian than I am. At work, he mentioned his new interest to a young co-worker.

"Wagner!" she exclaimed, in a voice that carried across the entire office. "Matthew, don't you know that he was an anti-Semite?"

And abruptly, what my friend had thought was a casual remark began to look like a potential career-killer. How eager do you think he's going to be in the future to confess what he likes in the great music of the West? He's better advised to confine himself to praising respectable cultural icons — Snoop Doggy Dogg, maybe. The most aggravating part is, I'll bet that "anti-Semite" thing is the only fact — if fact it is — that Matt's co-worker knows about Wagner. She probably got it from television.

As the campaign to drive Western culture underground accelerates, one shudders to imagine what other moral instruction these tone-deaf dupes of the nihilists and alienists will feel called upon to bellow at us: "Don't you know that Bach was a sexist paterfamilias, and Mozart a sexist philanderer? That Beethoven wasn't deafproud? That Mendelssohn and Mahler were self-hating Jews for Jesus?"

Egad, I do hope they never find out that, during the '30s and '40s, that little Austrian guy with the funny mustache was Richard Strauss's biggest fan. Farewell, Rosenkavalier! Speak no more, Zarathustra!

© 1996, 2002 by WTM Enterprises. All rights reserved.

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