Thousands of APA members slipped back in time, singing and swaying to the irreverent lyrics of Pete Seeger, who opened APA's 2000 Annual Convention, performing with his grandson Tao Rodriguez. Best known as one of the artists behind the 1960s folk-song revival, Seeger, now 81, sang many of the socially conscious tunes that made him famous, including "Guantanamera" and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone."
"His words remind me of a different self, a different time that seems so long ago," said one member after the concert.
That type of self-reflection was just what APA President Pat DeLeon, PhD, JD, hoped for when he invited Seeger to entertain APA's convention. "Listening to Pete Seeger inspires reflection in people," said DeLeon. "He has always stood for social change and making a social change is why most psychologists went into the field to begin with."
Advocating for a better society, in fact, characterized many of the APA 2000 Annual Convention programs, including DeLeon's three Presidential Miniconventions: Psychology and Law in the Workplace; Women in Science and Technology; and Prescription Privileges.
Many other convention sessions carried the message of social change as well: A talk by U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher, MD, on the mental health of the nation's minority populations; Human Genome Project Director Francis Collins, PhD, on the need for behavioral scientists in genomics and genetics; a report on psychology's advocacy successes; and a call for strengthening the voices of women psychologists.