Just better get the flashcards out
your calculators and all them granola bars out
and do not think I’m going home until the starz out
we about to do this shit until we pass out…
save me i hate this can barely stay awaked
i think im goin crazy cause i feel like gettin naked
this page is outrageous, tell me i can make it
alma mater daughter tell me why hast thou forsaked
me, i’m gonna get a C, silly me, i shoulda dropped this class down in kent 203
but now i know i’m here gotta stay gotta fight
still i fuckin hate butler in the middle of the night
Speaking of Columbia-related lyrics, Lisa Cammett, BC ’78, has composed a rap in protest against the the University’s disposal of books. “Columbia University simply throws away thousands of tons of usable office furniture, computers, and computer parts, office supplies, recyclable journals, and most tragically of all, books, many of which are not at all outdated and are in excellent condition—every year,” she explains. The song is part of her personal campaign to save Columbia’s used books.
Driven to Rap
I never did hear of a white woman rapper
But in truth, I could not be much unhappier
Caucasian… and living there in the “Hood”
How clear my Alma Mater isn’t doing what she should
As a child they told me: “Never throw away a book”
I want the world to know what that bad school took
They took away the chance to read 10,000 author’s works
Dumped treasure in the trash like a bunch of jerks!
I can’t remain silent as the time goes by
I can’t stand still as I ask myself why
Should I put my education on the shelf?
If books are just garbage I must ask myself:
Why did I learn all that? I’d like to cry
Inside at nighttime staring at the sky
Barnard College teaches a philosophy
That every forest is a left and every leaf is a tree
When knowledge is gone, it may be gone for good
And let’s not forget that paper’s made of wood
To throw away books kills trees and minds
And shows disrespect for all humankind
Has a department of ecology
They’ll tell you the rainforest’s there for you and me
Forest protects biodiversity
With all those animals, we’ll live longer, see?
Forest protects cooler temperatures, too
A cooler earth is better for me and you
Alaska’s breaking up, we’re burning fast
That’s fossil fuels, oil, coal, and gas
We have to conserve and recycle, too
To live longer, respect nature through and through
Corporations send waste to Africa, too
I want books sent instead between me and you
Why throw educational materials away?
All this wealth will be gone someday!
No time to tell what I found in the garbage
To the poor and disadvantaged, it would have been a harvest
So will we teach our kids that what we’ve learned
Is that a dollar saved is a dollar earned?
The opposite actually will be true
We consumed it all, there’s nothing left for you!
The computer’s down for good, we’re out of il
The future isn’t here for us to spoil!
Civilization depends on education, you see
And not one bit less on every single tree!
What will we teach you with, you sad-eyed child?
“Dig in the landfill,” she said—It’s not too wild!
I know what they call garbage because I’ve been through it
If you believe in social justice, DON’T LET THEM DO IT!
Lisa is lobbying for the establishment of a Columbia University book and journal adoption/donation center “where the precious intellectual knowledge too many of us here take for granted could be shipped to libraries, schools, and cultural institutions in other parts of the United States—or the world.” Look out for a profile of Lisa in the next issue of the Blue & White.
Photo via Wikimedia Commons