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Thu Sep 20, 2012, 03:58 PM

On the "lighter side," the Motown group Temptations may have mentioned "gun control"

for the first time in the popular arts. In their 1970 hit "Ball of Confusion," the second verse after the chorus has this:

Evolution, revolution, gun control, sound of soul-shooting rockets to the moon,
Kids growing up too soon,
Politicians say, "More taxes will solve everything,"
The band played on.

IIRC, the term "gun control" was cited only two years earlier in the Democratic Party Platform. Anyone have earlier mentions?

The song is rather non-sectarian, citing all matter of problems like a shopping list. "...suicide, too many beers..." Many sites for lyrics to this song, but I haven't figured out how to post links yet, as my computer collapsed just after DU's overhaul.

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Reply On the "lighter side," the Motown group Temptations may have mentioned "gun control" (Original post)
Eleanors38 Sep 2012 OP
louis-t Sep 2012 #1
NOLALady Sep 2012 #2
louis-t Sep 2012 #3
Tuesday Afternoon Sep 2012 #4

Response to Eleanors38 (Original post)

Thu Sep 20, 2012, 04:01 PM

1. Uh, I think it's "suicide, too many bills..."

"Hippies movin' to the hills.."

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Response to Eleanors38 (Original post)

Thu Sep 20, 2012, 04:07 PM

2. I guess I misheard.

I thought they said "birth control".

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Response to NOLALady (Reply #2)

Thu Sep 20, 2012, 05:06 PM

3. I always thought that, too!

There are some versions on the lyrics sites that have different lyrics, but the original Temps version says "gun control". Could be one of those times when the words were changed at the last minute and no one caught it when lyrics were sent to a publisher.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Original post)

Thu Sep 20, 2012, 05:34 PM

4. - Complete Lyrics For You to Discuss -

People movin' out
People movin' in
Why, because of the color of their skin
Run, run, run, but you sho' can't hide
An eye for an eye
A tooth for a tooth
Vote for me, and I'll set you free
Rap on brother, rap on
Well, the only person talkin'
'Bout love thy brother is the preacher
And it seems,
Nobody is interested in learnin'
But the teacher
Segregation, determination, demonstration,
Integration, aggravation,
Humiliation, obligation to our nation
Ball of Confusion
That's what the world is today

The sale of pills are at an all time high
Young folks walk around with
Their heads in the sky
Cities aflame in the summer time
And, the beat goes on

Air pollution, revolution, gun control,
Sound of soul
Shootin' rockets to the moon
Kids growin' up too soon
Politicians say more taxes will
Solve everything
And the band played on
So round 'n' round 'n' round we go
Where the world's headed, nobody knows
Just a Ball of Confusion
Oh yea, that's what the wold is today

Fear in the air, tension everywhere
Unemployment rising fast,
The Beatles' new record's a gas
And the only safe place to live is
On an indian reservation
And the band played on
Eve of destruction, tax deduction
City inspectors, bill collectors
Mod clothes in demand,
Population out of hand
Suicide, too many bills, hippies movin'
To the hills
People all over the world, are shoutin'
End the war
And the band played on.

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