Idols and Heroes lyrics


Joan Baez

There are really two kinds of public figures
Or two, as I really see in terms of abstract gatherings of them

I mean, there, there are idols and there are heroes
And they, they serve two different functions
And are present in two very different kind of societies
Which is, an idol is something that really exists beyond the people
It does their living for them
An idol is something that teaches people what they can't be
You know, I mean it exists in a sense
As a negation of the people who worship it

You know, Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe is worshiped, you know
By countless numbers of people who know
They'll never be Marilyn Monroe
And because they know that they'll never be Marilyn Monroe
They worship Marilyn Monroe

I mean the other one is hero
And a hero is something that teaches people
What they can be
I mean a hero is an available model
You know, that doesn't exist as something
That's impossible to reach
But really exists as the embodiment
Of what everybody could be
If I'm going to be a hero
Then I'm going to insist on making everybody a hero
I mean, that's the only way I can relate to it
You know, because, I was in a place in my former life
That I was afraid to go out to dinner, you know, and eat
In my favorite Mexican restaurant
Because everybody stared when I came in, you know
I honestly don't intend to have my life shoved around like that
Because it's really a very destructive process

How were you intending to finish?
You didn't say

We're waiting for word from David's lawyer's office
And they said nothing came in the mail, so we're...

I found out this morning that my appeals are over
And so, I'm not going to surrender myself
Because I figure if somebody's going to take
Three years of your life, the least they can do
Is give you a ride

You know, it, it shouldn't be too much
For someone to come up here and arrest me
I mean, I don't like the idea of me walking
Into their jail that way
I mean, let 'em come up and bust me for what I do
I'd like to give them a chance to see what they're doing
I mean I am leaving my nice scene behind
I am leaving my wife pregnant
I am leaving all those things

And I think that the least any man who comes to arrest me
Ought to do is see that
You know, I mean, let him know the reality
Of what he does

Let him see, let him step out from behind his padded gloves
You know, let him take his dark glasses off
And take a look
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