Election Soundtrack #19: Hard Times Come Again No More

On a typical weekday, I ride the #15 bus to downtown Portland, just after the commuter tide has ebbed. My traveling companions tend to be the strung-out and the beat-down, the mentally and dentally challenged, the consumptives and the diabetics, the homeless and the aimless. I mean that as an honest description, not a pejorative one. Most days, I see people who are struggling on the margins, and can only imagine the effort it must take to get through each day—whether looking for a square meal, the next fix, or a place to lay down and rest. Over the next four years, will more people be pushed to the edge, or will some be rescued from the brink?

Here’s a hymn and a prayer, my favorite song by Stephen Foster, sung by the McGarrigle clan and friends.

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