Bruce Springsteen broke from the scripted set of his ongoing “Springsteen on Broadway” show Tuesday night to slam the “inhumane” treatment of the children who have been separated from their families at the Mexican border by the Trump administration’s immigration policies.
After speaking in support of the pro-gun control March for Our Lives, the singer told the audience at the Walter Kerr Theatre, “It was a good day, and a necessary day because we are seeing things right now on our American borders that are so shockingly and disgracefully inhumane and un-American that it is simply enraging. And we have heard people in high position in the American government blaspheme in the name of God and country that it is a moral thing to assault the children amongst us. May God save our souls.
“For 146 shows, I have played pretty much the same set every night,” Springsteen concluded. “Tonight demands something different.”
A rough transcript of Springsteen’s comments is available on his website.
He then performed “The Ghost of Tom Joad,” his 1995 song inspired by John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath,” itself a parable about discrimination against migrant workers moving to California during the Great Depression. The song includes the lyric:
“Wherever somebody’s fighting for a place to stand/ Or a decent job or a helping hand/ Wherever somebody’s struggling to be free/ Look in their eyes, Ma, and you’ll see me.”
The Trump administration’s immigration policies, which have separated a reported 2,000 children from their families at the Mexican border, have polarized the country. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has attempted to cite the Bible in defense of the policies.