Ladies and Gentlemen,
as a politician I feel responsible for this more that is the general theme throughout this evening so far. The question is: What is this more? What can we actually do in order to achieve this more? I think to be quite honest, we can’t achieve it just by talking about it. It is something you discover, something you experience, something you feel, that hits you right in the gut or in the spine. Only then you know what this more can be. We as a society are confronted with the question: Are we able to allow this more to happen? In the moment we are living in times where it is being questioned by more and more people whether or not we are able to let this more out of music, out of arts, out of discourse happen. We have to do everything that is in our power and in our hands to fight those who are trying to let this more not happen in our lives. I was talking two days ago about a record that came out just the other week. On the backside of the sleeve it said that one artist was requesting, that her name was not put on the record because she feared, that the Trump regime would threaten her visa status when she got known for what she sang there. It was the record “Songs of resistance” by Marc Ribot. I really think, this is something that should wake us up. We should make sure that we know what is happening and it should call us all not to arms but to arts and to music. We must fight for the freedom in our lives.
We were talking about musical heroes. One of my musical heroes is Kris Kristofferson. He once sang “freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose” and I hate to not be in line with Kris but I think he is wrong there. Because even if you have lost everything else you can still lose freedom and this should not happen. We are actually at a point where this could happen in our lives and so we have to stand up to fight for the freedom, to fight for the openness of our societies and to make sure that everyone is able to express his or her voice and his or her own opinion and that we all together then are able to make something out of these individually expressed opinions. In the end it is all about being different without fear. That is what we want to be: We want to be different without fear and to have the freedom and the opportunity to live that diversity and to live that difference. I think that these festival days here in Hamburg are one showcase of how this could be done and I hope that we all take the strength from it with us back to our lives. I hope we can be sensible and sensitive for all those moments in life when we see that people are trying to threaten this. We all want to be different without fear and I think we all have the opportunity to do so and live a free and happy and diverse life. That’s what we all should do and this is what music is all about. Have a great evening and thank you very much.
Question of the presenter: This was an amazing and inspirational speech. I just have one question: Herr Senator, what do you want more?
Answer: How about more music?