Five Favorite Classic Protest Songs

While this isn’t a post about autism, I just wanted to post my own Canadian response to the events of last weekend in Charlottesville, VA. This is very simple and should be black and white. White supremacists, KKK supporters, and Nazis, regardless of where they’re from have no place in any society on this planet. Both sides did not kill a woman and injure anybody. It was one man on one side, a side that promotes death, and has no concept of how important human life is.¬†We must all speak out against the hate when we see it or we are just as guilty in our support by allowing it to happen and spread. “That is not acceptable” must be a phrase we can say without hesitation until we live in a world where it doesn’t need to be said anymore. While the USA’s “orange president” decides to condemn violence on many sides, I really think any kind of protest or rally with potential to become aggressive is a problem. Political party affiliation or representation does not give anybody permission to act however they want without consequence. Call me a pacifist, however, I’m perfectly okay with readers who disagree with me on this.

My point is that one of the most civilized ways to respond to chaos, anarchy, facism, white supremacy, or any kind of subject that is offensive is to sing/rap about it. So this post is dedicated to some of my favorite protest songs that have made me think about the world from the artists’ point of view. Just note that I don’t necessarily agree with everything they say.

  • The Clash – The Call Up

    I’m not big into Beatle’s sounding rock, but the political lyrics are just catchy. Perhaps I’m drawn to it due to how experimental the sound was at the time. Some say it’s a very left-leaning song due to its careful and subtle social commentary, but I can agree that it has the right amount of activism in their music without it being over the top or with an agenda to shove it down its listeners’ throats.
  • Dead Prez – Propaganda (WARNING: EXPLICIT LANGUAGE)

    So much is packed in this song. Everything is referenced from political coverups to the spreading of “fake news” which has always been around so it doesn’t phase me all that much as long as I make sure I stick to local news or the Globe and Mail from T-Dot, my second home.
  • Mahalia Jackson – We Shall Overcome

    This song was a staple of the civil rights movement, Mahalia worked closely with Dr. Martin Luther King. She also sang Precious Lord at his funeral in 1968. It is such a moving song that will go down in history. Regardless of your beliefs, this song will strengthen you to overcome.
  • The Honey Drippers – Impeach the President

    Oh, boy, I’m going to get a lot of hate mail and commentary on this one. Let me be clear though, regardless of opinions, I love funk music. The opening drum-break on this critique toward Richard Nixon has been sampled almost as many times as James Brown’s Funky Drummer. While the lyrics are fairly basic, they’re very relevant today. It’s hard to believe which news outlet has exact coverage of what’s going on in the White House these days. But the Honey Drippers do make a point. Trump’s guilt and actions always need to be in check. The US government needs to be accountable to the people and they have to know exactly what’s going on regardless of one’s political opinion. If one wants to get political but still get funky, this is the go to song!

    I will add more songs to this post as I’ve got to get to my night job, but writing this post was lots of fun in a time where politics can be really nasty.