The Ballad of Sandra Bland

Miles Vorkosigan posted this on Facebook and called it “a revenge ballad that is maybe the most controversial thing I perform in public.”  Seems like the kind of folklore we need right now.
Lyrics under the cut.

Well, if you go down into Waller County
You better just pass on through
There’s things that go on in the Waller County Jail
That you don’t want done to you
There’s a deep, deep ugliness in this land
When you peel the outer layer back
And they say the ghost of Sandra Bland
Is itching to pay it back
But I couldn’t believe it!
I just had to put it to the test
And I couldn’t reweave it
To give my privilege some rest
Maybe I misconceived it
And I’m nothing but a pest
There’s a certain kind of hate I just can’t explain
She was on her way to Houston
On the 10th day of July
When Brian Encina pulled her over
And ordered her to comply
He didn’t like her cigarette
Her attitude, or her skin
So he pulled her out and he threw her down
And he said, “I’m running you in!”
The jailhouse had the Confederate
And the Lone Star flags for banners
And the Sergeant said, “Bring her on in, Brian–
“We’s goan’ teach that girl some manners!”
They began their fun on July 10.
On July 13, she died
Captain Cantrell smirked and winked
And called it suicide.
But I couldn’t believe it!
I just had to put it to the test
Maybe I was naive, but
That woman had never been depressed
But the sheriff deceived it
And tried to put it all to rest
There were things in that report you just can’t explain!
It was long about half past midnight
In the Waller County Jail
Captain Cantrell and the Sergeant
Had let the last man out on bail
Brian Encina, lying low
Was assigned to the dispatch desk
With a couple of deputies there, on call
And the whole thing was picturesque
It was nearly 75 degrees
On that summer Texas night
But suddenly the room got cold
And Cantrell said, “That ain’t right”
A burst of mocking laughter stopped
As sudden as it began
And something raised Encina’s tie
Till it tangled in the ceiling fan!
Encina was lifted right off the ground
As he clawed at his tie, shriekong
Then came a hiss, and Cantrell said
“I think the gas main’s leaking!”
But all the doors slammed shut and locked
With a bang you could never forget
And the very last thing those officers smelled
Was Sandra’s cigarette!
They found the station blown to bits
With the flags all burned and tattered
With some letters in the ashes, spelling:
As I sifted through the evidence
And saw the photograph
I could hear five white men screaming.
I heard one black woman laugh.
So if you go down into Waller County
You better prepare to twitch
They say Sandra’s ghost is still out there
And payback is a bitch!
There’s sounds at night, and moving lights
And other things yet more strange
And they say that no one learned a thing
And that nothing will ever change
But I couldn’t believe it!
I just had to put it to the test
And I had to bereave it
Since the day of her arrest
Maybe we could achieve it
And her soul could stay at rest
There’s a certain kind of love that we can’t explain.
There’s a certain kind of loving you can’t explain.

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