Malvina Reynolds: Song Lyrics and Poems  


Notes: words and music by Malvina Reynolds; copyright 1969 Schroder Music Company, renewed 1997. Written in response to an alleged off-the-cuff remark made by then-governor Ronald Reagan. A Berkeley city planning commission member had spoken to him after a meeting, saying "Let the blood of the people of Berkeley be on your hands!" His reply was reportedly "Fine, I'll get some Boraxo to wash it off." This, after a man was shot and killed during the demonstrations against the University of California for razing a people-made park.

It's all right, it's all right,
If you're righteous it's all right,
Tho you've had your hands in blood up to the elbow;
You can always wash them clean with Boraxo.
Boraxo, Boraxo, the greatest stuff of all,
Boraxo in the bathroom, detergents in the hall,
Your dainty feet don't touch the street
Like people poor and mean,
And your conscience is washed clean with Boraxo.

The cop shot Rector on the roof,
The cop is clear of blame,
His uniform was spotless,
His rifle was the same.
The coppers carry dark wood clubs
So blood can not be seen,
And they always wash them clean
With Boraxo.


The student is protesting,
The copper clubs his hair.
His head is private property
But no one seems to care.
The happiness he's fighting for
Is earth and life and green,
And it can't be scoured clean
With Boraxo.


Malvina Reynolds songbook(s) in which the music to this song appears:
---- [none]

Other place(s) where the music to this song appears:
---- Broadside No. 100 (July 1969)
---- Broadside, Vol. III (New York: Broadside Magazine, 1970), p. 86

Malvina Reynolds recording(s) on which this song is performed:
---- Malvina Reynolds
---- Ear to the Ground
---- Malvina Reynolds
---- listen to video

Recordings by other artists on which this song is performed:
----Eugene Chadbourne: Homeland Security (Chadula 2002H, 2002)

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This page copyright 2006 by Charles H. Smith and Nancy Schimmel. All rights reserved.

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