Saying that each one of the recipients has touched countless lives, President Obama presented 13 Presidential Medals of Freedom during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House today.
All of the people on the stage, Obama said, "are my heroes individually." He said that if it were not for John Doar, the Justice Department official who personally escorted University of Mississippi's first black student to campus, he would not be president.
Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 5:50 pm
Don Draper sure has a lot of power for a fictional character. At the end of this week's episode of Mad Men, Don dropped the needle on that copy of Revolver ("start with this," his wife Megan said as she pointed at Side B's final track) and the tape loop distortion of "Tomorrow Never Knows" started dripping through his hi-fi speakers. As Lennon sang, "You may see the meaning of within," the camera showed Don's wife and his co-workers, all caught in moments of uncertainty and transition. Don's own response to this hit of mind-expanding music? Disinterest.
The Lebanese classical musician and composer Marcel Khalife is often compared to Bob Dylan — not for his music, but for his politics. The Middle Eastern musical and political icon sings about freedom and nationalism.
Khalife is famous for translating poetry into music. For years, he collaborated with the nationalist Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish.
"It began when I graduated from the music conservatory in Beirut. The civil war started in Lebanon — I wanted to change the world with music," says Khalife.