Margaret Thatcher Protest Songs Came in Every Genre (Hi, Public Enemy)

Categories: Lists

The Iron Lady

Monday's news of former English prime minister Margaret Thatcher's death elicited mixed responses. Some sites praised the Iron Lady's leadership tactics, while others celebrated her death. Pushing to get "Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead" in the Top 40 charts hours after Thatcher's death is pretty tacky, but not completely surprising, given the history of most Thatcher-inspired songs.

Songs praising Margaret Thatcher are few and far between, so here are five songs from various genres about England's first female prime minister.

See also: Billy Bragg, Crescent Ballroom, 3/26/13

The Specials: "Maggie's Farm"
Well he puts his cigar out in your face just for kicks
His bedroom window it is made out of bricks
And National Front stands behind closed doors

This British ska band transformed Bob Dylan's bluesy protest song into a protest against Thatcher. The Specials changed the National Guard lyric to National Front, which is England's fascist whites-only party.

Public Enemy: "Prophets of Rage"
We have a reason why
To debate the hate
That's why we're born to die
Mandela, cell dweller, Thatcher
You can tell her clear the way for the prophets of rage

Thatcher received flack from South Africans for calling the African National Congress "a typical terrorist organization." Public Enemy called her out in this song by linking her to Nelson Mandela as well as Denmark Vesey and Gabriel Prosser, who were part of the North American Slave Revolts.

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