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DAM: Born Here

DAM

Palestinian rap group DAM (Da Arab MC's, or "forever" in Arabic) created this music video about the life of Palestinians in Israel. They're from Lod, a town between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, so they're Palestinians with Israeli citizenship (often called "Israeli Arabs"). They usually rap in Arabic, but they made a Hebrew version of this song with a music video to get their message out to the majority of Israelis who don't speak Arabic.

Lyrics

Hunting season. The prey: another home
Of a dove trapped under the hawk’s regime
Let’s try more optimism
Each day I see like 100 cops
Arresting a dealer? Here or here? No…
They cam to destroy his neighbour’s home
What’s this? A hate bubble around the ghetto
Why’s it hard for him?
Wherever I go, excuses greet me
I broke the law? No, the law broke me
Enough, enough, gentlemen
I was born here, my grandparents too
You will not sever me from my roots
Even if I believed in this phony regime
You’d forbid me a porch to proclaim it from

Our neighbourhood is embarrassed
Not dressed in silk
If fear still lives in our hearts
A bride without a veil
Waiting, longing for her beauty
Ethnic cleansing knocks on the door
Time’s passed her over, forgotten her
The separation wall mutes her hope
Like a bird that breaks out of the cage
She’ll spread her wings and fly
No fear

Here I build my home, here you destroy it
If mine is illegal, what of yours, cousin?
I try to build a home, but what I can build is found
In do-re-me or will be found in a place
With people who promise a light in the tunnel
But it’s just a bulldozer, or a train going over
No, no, in this song no censorship
There’s sewage, rail tracks, call it “architecture”
Add to it white pepper
And it will be sneezed from a loaded gun
All the things I’ve said have been given voice, and
People stand in line who
Have difficulty in their smile, and smile in difficulty
While we have this in us, it’s a rope too tangled
“This is not racism, this is Zionism”
Enough. This is ignorance atop ignorance

Our neighbourhood is embarrassed
Not dressed in silk
If fear still lives in our hearts
A bride without a veil
Waiting, longing for her beauty
Ethnic cleansing knocks on the door
Time’s passed her over, forgotten her
The separation wall mutes her hope
Like a bird that breaks out of the cage
She’ll spread her wings and fly
No fear

Our eyes watch, our children seek
A future where “the sky’s the limit”
A dream now covered in ruins and dust
But the light’s not quite extinguished

A destroyed house with 8 tracks in the garden
Each day, at least 200 trains
Behind the ruins, a separation wall
That belongs between the house and the tracks
Instead, it’s between Snir and Nir Tzvi
The government says everything there is illegal
So, hang on, just a second…

Consider the “legal” neighbourhood has:
Health care centres – surrounded by sewage
Kindergarten – surrounded by sewage
There’s no excuse for this
It’s just the city doesn’t care about Arabs
Because the government has a wish:
Maximum Jews – on maximum land
Minimum Arabs – on minimum land
This house wasn’t legally approved
And you won’t erase it

Our neighbourhood is embarrassed
Not dressed in silk
If fear still lives in our hearts
A bride without a veil
Waiting, longing for her beauty
Ethnic cleansing knocks on the door
Time’s passed her over, forgotten her
The separation wall mutes her hope
Like a bird that breaks out of the cage
She’ll spread her wings and fly
No fear