30 Socialist Songs and Sayings To Wash Your Hands To

Twenty-second clips of Solidarity Forever, 9 to 5, Joe Hill, Guantanamera, and more.

Lu Zhao

Wash your hands with Solidarity Forever. (Photo by washyourlyrics.com)

To pro­tect your­self and your fam­i­ly from coro­n­avirus, we sug­gest social­ism, and also hand­wash­ing—the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol rec­om­mends you scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds.

"Your Majesty, please... I don't like to complain, But down here below, we are feeling great pain."—'Yertle the Turtle,' Dr. Seuss

If you have noth­ing to think about, 20 sec­onds can feel like an eter­ni­ty. Here are 20-sec­ond social­ist and rev­o­lu­tion­ary songs, poems and quotes to get your fight­ing spir­it up.


Sol­i­dar­i­ty for­ev­er / 1915

Sol­i­dar­i­ty forever

Sol­i­dar­i­ty forever

Sol­i­dar­i­ty forever

For the union makes us strong

We shall over­come / Pete Seeger / 1963

We shall overcome

We shall overcome

We shall over­come, some day

Union Maid / 1941

Oh, you can’t scare me, I’m stick­ing to the union,

I’m stick­ing to the union, I’m stick­ing to the union.

Oh, you can’t scare me, I’m stick­ing to the union,

I’m stick­ing to the union til the day I die.

9 to 5 / Dol­ly Par­ton / 1980

Workin’ 9 to 5, what a way to make a livin’

Bare­ly get­tin’ by, it’s all takin’ and no givin’

They just use your mind and you nev­er get the credit

It’s enough to dri­ve you crazy if you let it

This Land is Your Land / 1951

This land is your land, this land is my land

From the Cal­i­for­nia to the New York island

From the Red­wood For­est, to the gulf stream waters

This land was made for you and me

Inter­na­tionale — Amer­i­can / 1900

Arise ye pris’ners of starvation

Arise ye wretched of the earth

For jus­tice thun­ders condemnation

A bet­ter world’s in birth!

Bread and ros­es / 1988

As we go march­ing, march­ing, we bring the greater days,

The ris­ing of the women means the ris­ing of the race.

No more the drudge and idler, ten that toil where one reposes,

But a shar­ing of life’s glo­ries, bread and ros­es, bread and roses.

There Is Pow­er In A Union / 1913

There is pow­er in a fac­to­ry, pow­er in the land

Pow­er in the hand of the worker

But it all amounts to nothing

If togeth­er we don’t stand

There is pow­er in a Union

Not Ready to Make Nice / Dix­ie Chicks / 2006

I’m not ready to make nice

I’m not ready to back down

I’m still mad as hell, and I don’t have time

To go round and round and round

It’s too late to make it right

I prob­a­bly would­n’t if I could

Cause I’m mad as hell

Can’t bring myself to do what it is

You think I should

Run­ning with the Wild things / Against the Cur­rent / 2016

We got too big for the cage, you locked us up in

Let’s mark this down as the day, that we start­ed something

So open the gate, open the gate cause when we

Final­ly escape, final­ly escape we’ll be

Tear­ing through the streets

Run­ning with the wild things

Aint done noth­ing if you ain’t been called a red / 1984

Well you ain’t done noth­in’ if you ain’t been called a red

if you’ve marched or agi­tat­ed, you’re bound to hear it said

so you might as well ignore it, or love the word instead

cause you ain’t been doin’ noth­in’ if you ain’t been called a red

Work­er’s Song / 1981

We’re the first ones to starve, we’re the first ones to die

The first ones in line for that pie-in-the-sky

And we’re always the last when the cream is shared out

For the work­er is work­ing when the fat cat’s about

Bel­la Ciao / 1906

Una mat­ti­na mi sono svegliato,

o bel­la, ciao! bel­la, ciao! bel­la, ciao, ciao, ciao!

Una mat­ti­na mi sono svegliato,

e ho trova­to l’invasor.

O par­ti­giano, por­ta­mi via,

o bel­la, ciao! bel­la, ciao! bel­la, ciao, ciao, ciao!

O par­ti­giano, por­ta­mi via,

ché mi sen­to di morir.

I’ll Dance On Your Grave Mrs Thatch­er / 2013

And we’ll dance

Yes we’ll dance

We’ll dance on your grave Mrs. Thatcher

We’ll dance

Yes, we’ll dance

We’ll dance on your grave Mrs. Thatcher

Joe Hill / 1940

I dreamed, I saw Joe Hill last night

Alive as you and me

Says I But Joe, you’re ten years dead”

I nev­er died” says he

I nev­er died” says he

Ring­ing of Rev­o­lu­tion / 1966

Oh, life was a game, and work was a shame,

And pain was pre­vent­ed by pleasure.

The world, cold and grey, was so far away

In the dis­tance only mon­ey could measure.

But their thoughts were bro­ken by the ring­ing of revolution.

Do You Hear The Peo­ple Sing? / 1980

Do you hear the peo­ple sing,

Singing a song of angry men?

Is the music of a people

who will not be slaves again!

When the beat­ing of your heart

Echoes the beat­ing of the drums,

There is a life about to start

When tomor­row comes!

I’m a Social­ist / Mar­cel Carti­er / 2014

I’m a social­ist, more than just a theorist

That means I keep it mil­i­tant, the boss man’s nemesis

Rep the orga­niz­ers, 9 to 5 grinders

Home­less and the down­trod­den, true free­dom fighters

I’m a social­ist, more than just a theorist

That means I keep it mil­i­tant, the boss man’s nemesis

Guan­tanam­era / 1929

Con los pobres de la tierra

Quiero yo mi suerte echar

Con los pobres de la tierra

Quiero yo mi suerte echar

El arroyo de la sierra

Me com­place mas que el mar


The New Colos­sus / Emma Lazarus / 1883

Keep, ancient lands, your sto­ried pomp!” cries she

With silent lips. Give me your tired, your poor, 

Your hud­dled mass­es yearn­ing to breathe free, 

The wretched refuse of your teem­ing shore. 

Send these, the home­less, tem­pest-tossed to me, 

I lift my lamp beside the gold­en door!”

Yer­tle the Tur­tle / 1958

Then again, from below, in the great heavy stack,

Came a groan from that plain lit­tle tur­tle named Mack.

Your Majesty, please… I don’t like to complain,

But down here below, we are feel­ing great pain.

I know, up on top you are see­ing great sights,

But down here at the bot­tom we, too, should have rights.

Let Amer­i­ca Be Amer­i­ca Again / 1935

O, let Amer­i­ca be Amer­i­ca again

The land that nev­er has been yet

And yet must be the land where every man is free.

The land that’s mine the poor man’s, Indian’s, Negro’s, ME

Who made America,

Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain,

Whose hand at the foundry, whose plough in the rain,

Must bring back our mighty dream again.


Social­ism is a scare­word they have hurled at every advance the peo­ple have made in the last 20 years. Social­ism is what they called pub­lic pow­er. Social­ism is what they called social secu­ri­ty. Social­ism is what they called farm price sup­ports. Social­ism is what they called bank deposit insur­ance. Social­ism is what they called the growth of free and inde­pen­dent labor orga­ni­za­tions. Social­ism is their name for almost any­thing that helps all the people.

– Har­ry S. Tru­man / 1952


We live in cap­i­tal­ism, its pow­er seems inescapable – but then, so did the divine right of kings. Any human pow­er can be resist­ed and changed by human beings. … We who live by writ­ing and pub­lish­ing want and should demand our fair share of the pro­ceeds; but the name of our beau­ti­ful reward isn’t prof­it. Its name is freedom.
– Ursu­la K Le Guin / 2014

We are social­ists because we believe that work must be orga­nized for the col­lec­tive ben­e­fit of those who do the work and cre­ate the prod­ucts, and not for the prof­it of the boss­es. Mate­r­i­al resources must be equal­ly dis­trib­uted among those who cre­ate these resources.

– The Com­ba­hee Riv­er Col­lec­tive State­ment / 1977


All that social­ism means to me, to be very frank with you, is democ­ra­cy with a small d.’ I believe in democ­ra­cy, and by democ­ra­cy, I mean that, to as great an extent as pos­si­ble, human beings have the right to con­trol their own lives. And that means that you can­not sep­a­rate the polit­i­cal struc­ture from the eco­nom­ic structure.

– Bernie Sanders / 1986


To me, what social­ism means is to guar­an­tee a basic lev­el of dig­ni­ty. It’s assert­ing the val­ue of say­ing that the Amer­i­ca we want and the Amer­i­ca that we are proud of is one in which all chil­dren can access a dig­ni­fied edu­ca­tion. It’s one in which no per­son is too poor to have the med­i­cines they need to live.

– Alexan­dria Oca­sio-Cortez / 2018


With the devel­op­ment of indus­tri­al cap­i­tal­ism, a new and unan­tic­i­pat­ed sys­tem of injus­tice, it is lib­er­tar­i­an social­ism that has pre­served and extend­ed the rad­i­cal human­ist mes­sage of the Enlight­en­ment and the clas­si­cal lib­er­al ideals that were per­vert­ed into an ide­ol­o­gy to sus­tain the emerg­ing social order.

– Noam Chom­sky / 1973


No real social change has ever been brought about with­out a rev­o­lu­tion — Rev­o­lu­tion is but thought car­ried into action. Every effort for progress, for enlight­en­ment, for sci­ence, for reli­gious, polit­i­cal, and eco­nom­ic lib­er­ty, emanates from the minor­i­ty, and not from the mass.

Com­mu­nist man­i­festo / 1847

The Com­mu­nists dis­dain to con­ceal their views and aims.

They open­ly declare that their ends can be attained only by

the forcible over­throw of all exist­ing social conditions.

Let the rul­ing class­es trem­ble at a Com­mu­nis­tic revolution.

The pro­le­tar­i­ans have noth­ing to lose but their chains. 

They have a world to win. 

Work­ers of the world, unite!

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