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We are We

We are We

We've been we
for far too long
to not realize it yet.
With swastikas upon our arms,
we've burned ourselves---
gassed ourselves---
and we've never asked ourselves why.

And as we never realize the swastikas only cover
the numbers engraved upon our arms,
we've cracked our whips
upon our backs
as we've ran for freedom in the dark.

Then we avenged ourselves
and killed ourselves
through so many angry years.
And as we've worn our hoods
and burned our crosses
in front of our own homes,
we've held our black gloves in the sky
to show our strength yet again.

We've bruised ourselves
and forced ourselves
with firehoses,
while we've never really taught ourselves why.

And we've torn our towers from the sky
just as we've killed ourselves in Hiroshima
We've placed ourselves on reservations
just as we've placed ourselves in genocide

We've destroyed our lives upon a harbor
and we've starved ourselves in Niger
And as we've watched ourselves
with half-closed eyes,
we've heard ourselves with half-closed ears.

And we sell ourselves bullet shells
as we die inside a diamond mine
And though we know we've come a long way
from the days of way back when,
we still sell ourselves our oil wells
and we've lynched ourselves alive
But this time in our airports…
In front of everyone, we've sinned

And that's how we know
we've still got a long way to go
And while that doesn't take away from
how far we've come,
we still must know

that we were we on those cotton fields in Georgia
and we were we when we were wrong
We were we when we shaved our heads
and we were we when our hair was long

We were we when we've been our weakest
and we were we when we've been strong
We've been we all the while
I say we've been we all along