Oh, police state, our own repressive land G D G - D
True corporate love in all our cops command G A7 D - A7 D
With growing arsenals of weaponry D - G -
We see them fight for thee. C Em D
And stand on guard for governments D - G -
No matter how cor - rupt they may be. A7 - D D7
Oh, police state, stop harassing me. G D G C A7 D
Oh, police state G B7 C
you won’t make folks more free. C G D G
Oh, police state you’re a coward’s fantasy. G C GDG +G7
New words: © Smokey Dymny, June 22, 2002
Originally: “O Canada” by Adolphe B. Routhier, 1839-1920.
Music: C. Lavalee, 1842-91. English words by Stanley Weir.
“We live in cheap and twisted times. Our leaders are low-rent Fascists and our laws are a tangle of mockeries. Recent polls indicate that the only people who feel optimistic about the future are first-year law students who expect to get rich by haggling over the ruins.”
Hunter S.Thompson in: Songs of the Doomed, Gonzo Papers Vol. 3
Canada went over the edge on June 1988, or on June15, 2000 or … pick your own date.
The fact is, we are a police state, now.
That is a state in which the police routinely interfere with politics or politicians in their own interests, or at the behest of their political masters.
Once upon a time you were taught in school about the police and you may have been taught that if you were in trouble you should turn to the nearest policeman for help… so it probably came as quite a shock to you when you first saw people at a peaceful demonstration, or on labour picket line, being grabbed and taken to an area away some distance from the from the press cameras, and then being physically subdued. And, more and more often, the cops even care about the cameras. They are confident that the press will give the story the correct “spin.”
Now this kind of thing has been going on for quite a while, and the more you learn history, the more you learn about how old such practices really are. But in Canada, things used to proceeded calmly. People would get arrested at demonstrations, lawyers would help them avoid convictions, or to get lesser fines, and most people thought everything was quite fine.
But we have passed a milestone recently and because we’re used to the mostly negative behaviour of the police some of us may not have even noticed its significance.
But some lawyers have pointed it out in the press.
The fact is that the police are now regularly engaging in political action to further their own agenda. The first example I remember was when they got a Toronto City Councilor, Olivia Chow, removed from the Police Commission for saying that an Ontario Coalition Against Poverty demo was NOT a “riot” perpetrated by OCAP but was started by the police. Then there was a police campaign to sell car stickers to citizens to show their support for the police. That campaign was stopped by the Police Commission – but only after a public outcry. Soon after that they overtly lobbied for Ernie Eves, a Conservative Party candidate whom they wanted as party leader. You might remember other examples. What’s important is that these are not just examples of the ‘good old boys’ flexing their collective muscles. These actions fall under the definition of what is a Police State.
In 1915, Jack London wrote the “Iron Heel”. In this novel he predicted that the U.S. would become a fascist state run by Corporations - a plutocracy. He could not have known then that the Russian Revolution would delay this development until after1989, when the Berlin Wall fell. But after the West stopped worrying about the threat of communism, the U.S. fascists have completely asserted themselves and are now out in the open. Whether Republican or Democrat, all their leaders will bow to a capitalist agenda.