The Books of Howard Zinn

from Say Their Names by David Rovics

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On September 17th, President Trump held a conference at the White House, launching his new initiative to counter the influence of the left in the schools of the USA. He specifically called out Howard Zinn, author of the much-loved book, A People's History of the United States, which I highly recommend, along with various books by all the other authors I mention in the song.

lyrics

The Books of Howard Zinn

The president stood at his lectern at a conference of the press
The state of education was the subject of his address
There should be more patriotism in the schools, more saluting of the flag
More about the invention of the telephone and the plastic bag
The kids don't need to know about all the bloodied soil
About all of the rebellions or all the wars for oil
It's all far left propaganda, it should be banned or burned
We're just great and getting greater, that's all they need to learn

The president said it must stop or the anarchists will win
The indoctrination of the youth by the books of Howard Zinn

They don't need to know about the workers or the general strikes
They need no lessons on the scalpings of adults and kids alike
No chapters on the riots that brought us where we are
The visions of the damned who followed the North Star
Just tell the kids how brilliant were the Founding Fathers all
Just see what bullshit sticks when you throw it at the wall
Reality doesn't matter, neither does the past
So ditch your Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz and shred your Howard Fast

Chorus

The students don't need to know how many souls were lost
Beneath the rain of gunships, they don't need to know the cost
To the nations that lay shattered, the homeless veterans right here
Dying on the sidewalk beside empty cans of beer
The kids don't need to think, they just need to serve
And be grateful for the billionaire and his steely nerve
He'll free us from the confines of knowing up from down
Just don't read Jeremy Brecher, Angela Davis or Dee Brown

Chorus

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from Say Their Names, released October 3, 2020

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David Rovics Portland, Oregon

"Absolutely brilliant. David Rovics says exactly what needs to be said."
Ian McMillan, BBC

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