Bet Smith - Forgive You
From Bet's forthcoming LP: Downer
A message about the song from the artist:
This song began as a chorus to what might have become a very convoluted love song. I decided it had to be something else, something bigger. I re-wrote the song several times before I came up with the final version. For me, Forgive you is a song about economic injustice, greed, environmental destruction and the climate crisis. The video is made up drawings brought to life using photo and video editing software. I had little idea of what I was getting into and it took a really long time. After a great deal of thought, I decided to cast an illustrated representation of myself as a sort-of reflective antagonist. I deliberated about casting various politicians and corporate figureheads in this role, but I am always hesitant to point the finger at others and instead I wanted to acknowledge my own privilege and dependence on fossil fuels. I have benefited, and continue to benefit from the extraction of non-renewable resources. That said, I am scared, sad and angry that climate change has been ignored for long enough that it has become a true emergency, and still, we - North Americans particularly - aren’t responding with nearly as much urgency and investment as is required. I’m really hoping that changes soon. Solutions are available. The technology is here, and more is on its way. But the solution also requires us to live much simpler lives. While I think about Forgive You in relation to the climate crises, I am fully aware that the song leaves itself wide open to interpretation. I offer this song with respect and in solidarity with all who experience discrimination, injustice, and oppression. I recognize the ways in which I have benefited from a system that rewards people who look like me. I am working on educating myself so I can be part of the solution. I would like to acknowledge that this work was created on the traditional territory of the Anishnaabeg, specifically the Ojibway and Chippewa people. As a settler, I am grateful for the opportunity to live and work in this beautiful place and I appreciate the long history of stewardship and connection to this land that is held by indigenous people. The settler community still has a lot of work to do in moving toward reconciliation.