On Military Drones (and tearing them to pieces)

Here is the poem I read at today’s demo for Human Rights Day!

I hope everyone who was there gets all charged up about drones and decides to read Medea Benjamin’s book Drone Warfare: killing by remote control- and then come to our book club! (hint, hint you can still come to the book club, even if you didn’t make it to today’s demo).

It’s at Mayday Bookstore on Jan. 12th at 2pm and there will be coffee and snacks!

On Military Drones (and tearing them to pieces)

It’s the arms race of the future, really, 

except this time Sputnik’s ganna be an unmanned plane.

And if the vessel is unmanned, doesn’t that make the killing 

automatically inhumane?

It’s odd to me to think that when I’m voting with my dollar, 

I demand a better treatment of the chicken for my dinner 

then our military seems to see fit for those people on the ground 

in places like Iraq and Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan…

You know, those unreliable statistics, because really- who sees?

The trouble with machines is there’s a lack of accountability. 

I want our government to have to make stickers for all their little planes that say 

“No dolphins or civilians were harmed in the making of this democracy”

How about that? How about a harm free approach to foreign policy? 

Can you install that, Uncle Sam, at the point of your gun?

Of course not, it’s an oxymoron. American the humanitarian. 

On a mission and it’s called an invasion.

Look up in the sky! It’s a bird, it’s a plane- 

cause it sure aint Superman.

It’s a U.S. military drone and it’s loaded, so go ahead and run.

Cause it sees you too, but not with eyes. 

With orders.


Cause anyway, that’s what “collateral damage” is code for: 

Dead people, lots of them children.

Unarmed civilians is a way of saying that they had nothing to do with 

this conflict, but then neither do we- on this end.

The taxed, yet, unrepresented majority of people in this country 

who do not like the war, and do not support another one. 

But what can we do?

We don’t feel the trigger under our finger because we’re fed a constant stream of lies

and all our lives we are taught that it’s

“Do unto others has you would have done unto yourself”

And yet every time the news breaks that a woman is raped, that a village is

slaughtered we are ready to make those sacrifices for what we call

he safety of our country and it is utter nonsense


Violence begets violence. This is a fundamental truth.


We are the purveyors of death and atrocity in these parts of the world, 

and then you wonder why they hate us   ???

So you tell me, who is the real terrorist? 

Rebel with a gun or a smiling politician?

Whatever gets the job done. 

And these days the job is as easily done as the push of a button 

by some pimple-faced in a bunker in Nevada somewhere.

Did you know the controls for these drones are compatible with a PlayStation? 

This is not a coincidence.

They are spoon feeding this to your kids, so I suggest you get acquainted. 

Because drones are the future of warfare that already is.

And I heard Obama just Okayed the use of drones over ALL U.S. airspace

so be prepared to see them around.

Equipped with cameras instead of bombs, 

so that should make us all feel safer. 

They say that they are looking for the terrorists among us 

and looking at everyone, you know –Just in case

Even though the only cases it seems our government team 

can solve these days are the ones they cooked up in the first place.

But hey-they’ve gotta spend that budget someway, don’t they?

And did you know that it takes a whopping, jaw dropping, 300 people 

to fully operate one of those drones for just one day? 

One of those $28 million planes?

Oh yes sir’ee, it’s a booming industry.

Remember that bumper sticker about how great it’s be if schools had all the funding they needed and the army had to hold a bake sale?

People, this is what our government is busy buying. 

This is where the tax dollars go.

So when they tell you they’ve gotta cut some spending, 

you just tell’em “Land some drones, man. 

Just land the drones.”


And call me a sentimental hippie like that, but I believe 

in the power of the people to fight back.

Cause we can’t just let this technology run wild, or go rouge, 

or come crashing home on us

We must realize and regulate, study up and educate each other

Before this whole thing gets out of control 

(with evidence to suggest we are already at the threshold).

So let your president and members of congress know 

what you think about the wars, 

and what you think about the drones. 

Tell’em we don’t need any more killing machines, 

we could use that money much better here at home. 

Leave those kids in Pakistan alone.

It’s time to end the war, and land the drones.