(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)
screenshot: Aaron Bushnell self-immolation

Pointing pistols as the man burns,
as Gaza burns,
as civilization burns,
as the planet burns.
I don’t need guns 
I need fire extinguishers.

Raytheon racketeers and Pentagon pimps
swollen fat from the blood of unnamed victims
glossed over in headlines by The New York Times
while National Guard troops patrol the New York subways
and babies with legs like toothpicks fill our screens.
Pouring arms into Israel 
while humanitarian-LARPing aid airdrops.
Waving around armageddon weapons
while accusing peacemongers of treason.
Well sure I’d ask for seconds mister president sir,
but see I don’t need guns
I need fire extinguishers.

I need someone to put some fat back on those babies.
I need someone to get the plastic out of the oceans.
I need the bombs to stop and the siege to lift
and a healthy planet for the kids to play in.
I need kids to stop getting their limbs blown off
so they can run and play in that healthy world.
Can you drone strike me a thriving biosphere?
Can you ICBM those Gazans some food?
Can you extinguish this fire with your weapons and wars?
Then get outta the way man.
We don’t need guns
we need fire extinguishers.

“Free Palestine,” the man on fire said.
“FREE PALESTINE!” he screamed.
And then the cops showed up with their guns and their bullets,
because of course they fucking did.
And Gaza still burns,
and the world still burns,
and our eyes still burn,
and our lungs still burn,
and our hearts still burn,
and our rage still burns,
and they promise us the burning will stop
if we just add in a few more guns.

We don’t need guns you stupid cop.
We need this burning world to heal.


Caitlin Johnstone, an independent journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Her website is here and you can follow her on Twitter @caitoz or caityjohnstone.medium.com. You can read more about her project HERE. Read her Substack blog. 


We use browser cookies to manage authentication, for analytics, and to ensure you get the best experience on our website.