Wednesday, May 13, 2009

`Greensboro Massacre Song'

The Klan arrived
The cops moved aside
The sharpshooters aimed their guns
The FBI laughed
The Nazis attacked
And shed five workers’ blood.
Five fighters for freedom now lay dead
Slain in Greensboro, their deaths will be avenged.

Jim Waller
Was a doctor
Who always served the poor
And he also saw
That mill workers
Needed to wage class war.
He led a strike and workers chose him head
But those who owned the factories wished him dead.

And brave Cesar
Was a fighter
Inside Duke Hospital
He fought the Klan
With his bare hands
Until they mowed him down.
He saw that those who work are still enslaved
And for his thoughts, they sent him to an early grave.

And Mike Nathan
Carried no gun
Yet still helped Africa
He did not run
But helped the wounded
Till shot from the Klan car.
On his deathbed, the Party honored him
But those who sent his killers, they still grin.

And Bill Sampson
Did not give in
And fired in self-defense
And as he died
He said “keep on firing”
As the bullets took effect.
He also led a union at his plant
And was not afraid to be a communist.

And Sandy Smith
She knew racists
All wished to see her dead
She saved children
Then took a gun
To make sure the Nazis fled.
They shot her down like many women before
The government killed her, `cause she was a fighter.

To listen to "The Greensboro Massacre" protest folk song, you can click on the following music site link:

“The Greensboro Massacre” protest folk song was written nearly 30 years ago, shortly after five anti-racist left activists were murdered on November 3, 1979 in Greensboro, North Carolina.

According to The True Story Of The Greensboro Massacre by Paul and Sally Bermanzohn:
“The U.S. Treasury Department Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms [BATF] had sent agent Bernard Butkovich to North Carolina to join the Nazis and oversee the assassination. On Nov. 3 [1979] he brought the list of who was to be shot and helped the killers escape. The caravan of Klan and Nazis were recruited and organized by Klansmen and FBI provocateur Edward Dawson. Dawson worked in league with the Greensboro Police Department. While Dawson led the caravan into our demonstration, Greensboro Police Detective Jerry Cooper followed them, deliberately delaying the arrival of any other cops.”

On Nov. 17, 1980 the Southern jury found the six Klansmen and Nazis indicted for murder, as a result of their apparent involvement in the Greensboro Massacre, to be “not guilty.” Coincidentally, African-Americans had not been allowed to serve on the jury. (Downtown 11/9/94)

To listen to some other protest folk songs, you can check out the “Columbia Songs for a Democratic Society” music site at the following link:

Additional protest folk songs from the 1970s and 1980s can be found at these other links: