What Are You Fighting For
Phil Ochs
The Early Years
What Are You Fighting For - Phil Ochs
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Lyrics

Oh you tell me that there's danger to this land you call your own
And you watch them build the war machines right beside your home
And you tell me that you're ready to go marching to the war

Oh, I know you're set for fighting, but what are you fighting for?

Before you pack your rifle and sail across the sea
Just think upon the southern part of the land that you call free
Oh, there's many kinds of slavery and we've found many more

Yes, I know you're set for fighting, but what are you fighting for?

And before you walk out on your job and answer to the call
Just think about the millions who have no job at all
And the men who wait for handouts with their eyes upon the floor

I know you're set for fighting, but what are you fighting for?

Turn on your TV, turn it on so loud
And watch the fool a smiling there and tell me that you're proud
And listen to your radio, the noise it starts to pour

Oh, I know you're set for fighting, but what are you fighting for?

Read your morning papers, read every single line
And tell me if you can believe that simple world you find
Read every slanted word till your eyes are getting sore,

I know you're set for fighting, but what are you fighting for?

And listen to your leaders, the ones that won the race
As they stand right there before you and lie into your face
If you ever try to buy them, you know what they stand for

I know you're set for fighting, but what are you fighting for?

Put ragged clothes upon your back and sleep upon the ground
And tell police about your rights as they drag you down
And ask them as they lead you to some deserted door

Yes, I know you're set for fighting, but what are you fighting for?

But the hardest thing Ill ask you, if you will only try
Is take your children by their hands and look into their eyes
And there you'll see the answer you should have seen before

If you'll win the wars at home, there'll be no fighting anymore

Written by Phil Ochs • Copyright © Universal Music Publishing Group