Who -- Who's the one that
-- let Supreme Court be taken by outback hicks?!
Sue! -- Sue the Senate!
-- They know better than that! That's malpractice!
It's time for distortion -- of the Constitution
-- it's nothin' but a waste of paper any ol' way --
Time for its contortion -- and convolution
-- these right-wing flunkies could write a better one any ol' day!
The ignorant are always being used
-- by the fascist forces running the machine.
Idiots stand up and fight against rights for the accused!
-- When anyone can be accused --
Why can't it be seen
-- that limiting their own freedom
-- -- -- is what it's gonna mean?!
Am I safe from Invasion of Privacy?
-- Walking on the Bayshore, can I be sure?
There USED TO be a Fourth Amendment
-- to protect me from Illegal Search and Seizure
That was when the Bill of Rights could pass the test!
-- when it use' t' have ten Articles!
But if you ever have the inconvenience of arrest,
-- it's reduced to just two Particles:
Sit Down! and Shut Up!
-- You have the right to remain silent.
If you give up the right to remain silent,
-- anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.
You have the right to speak with an attorney
-- and to have that attorney present during questioning.
Do you understand these rights as I've explained them to you?
-- You have two rights:
-- -- -- SIT DOWN! and SHUT UP!
(p)(c)2010 Norman Schulerud Bie, Jr. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED! (c)1986 Norman B (part of collection: Deviations from the Norm). First broadcast in 1986 on WMNF 88.5 FM Tampa Community Radio. First performed live in 1986 at the Songwriters' Forum at Rough Riders restaurant in Ybor City section of Tampa.
This poem has a long history for me: About eighty live performances in twenty-four years, half on stage, about half on the radio, a couple on Public Access TV.
On the original recording of this song, Line 8 said "Reagan's flunkies" instead of "right-wing flunkies;" because Supreme Court Justices are appointed for a long time (for 'life or good behavior'), therefore, long after Ronald Reagan packed the Court with an evil gang of right-wing morons in the 1980s, they remain entrenched restricting freedom for a many years -- one just left on the eve of NATIONAL FREEDOM DAY four years ago, on Jan. 31, 2010; the other two Reagan appointees (Scalia & Kennedy) are still there.
A reviewer named Tom Roe wrote in the 1990s in two different newspapers that I was irrelevantly attacking Ronald Reagan after he was no longer President. Mr. Roe was obviously unaware of how the Government works: Reagan's right-wing flunkies are STILL running the Supreme Court, one of them wrote the Court's official opinion in last week's corrupt & insane decision claiming that: (1) Corporations are Persons; (2) Money is Speech; (3) Foreign Corporations have more Freedom of Speech than American citizens; & (4) We are Fucked. What a bunch of crooks!
Line 2's "outback hicks" does not refer to the Australian Outback; what I meant was more like gruff ignorant American he-man woman-hating bullheaded bullies, like the KKK or Antonin Scalia. Sometimes on some stages I have self-censored this poem, leaving out "fascist" in line 10, sometimes stuttering the "f-f-f-" sound in its place. Censorship in Line 11 consisted of changing the word "Idiots" to "They;" because it is wrong to call people "idiots." The Bible says don't call people "Thou fool!" which may be interpreted to mean "Don't call people names," or "Don't call people anything." (NOTE -- Ignore the above line numbers when reading the following notes on rhythm.)
LAYERS OF RHYTHMS:
SAPPHIC RHYTHM or a Sapphic Stanza is typically 3 or 4 lines followed by a Sapphic Appendix, which is a fraction of a line. Sappho's stanzas were 3 lines. In English, Sapphic Stanzas are often 4 lines.
CAESURAS (pronounced "si ZYOO ruz") are pauses in the rhythm of a line: In this poem, the first, third & fourth stanzas are actually not eight lines each, but four with a caesura, or pause, in the middle of each.
RAPIDLY ADVANCING AND MUTATING SAPPHIC RHYTHM: Instead of repeating the rhythm of line/line/line/partial line, in this case, RAMSR goes stanza/partial stanza/partial line; stanza/stanza/partial line.
INTERNAL RHYME, both inter- & intraline, adds to the layering.