What does Wake Up mean?

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Rage Against the Machine: Wake Up Meaning


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Wake Up Lyrics

Come on!

Come on, although ya try to discredit
Ya still never read it
The needle, I'll thread it
Radically poetic
Standin' with the fury that they had in '66
And like E-Double I'm mad
Still knee-deep in the system's shit


    #1 top rated interpretation:
    click a star to vote
    Dec 28th 2007 report

    "Yea, the several federal men
    Who pulled schemes on the dream
    And put it to an end"

    I thought perhaps this maybe a reference to the implementation of the federal reserve in 1913. The act that essentially allowed america to be hijacked by a very few elite. An unfortunate fact that was realized by president Woodrow Wilson,although sadly only after he put the fed into effect. What do you guys think??

  2. rubydaddy
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    Feb 18th 2022 report

    "Networks at work keeping people calm" may refer to George H W Bush when he was at the CIA. The "agency" was distributing heroin in low income neighborhoods. No uprising when you're strung out on dope, or dope sick.
    IMO they probably still do it.

  3. anonymous
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    Mar 21st 2020 report

    "The Dream" that was brought to an end was MLK.
    His 'I had a dream" speech.

  4. anonymous
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    Aug 14th 2012 report

    This song speaks the truth about the leaders who got killed before when they tried to give power to the ppl and not the government. The global elite runs this world. Our constitution has been trampled on so much til it has no meaning.
    What's so awesome is the way he quietly repeats I think I heard a shot over and over until you can feel the shot and the anger they must have had then...doing just what the government does to us to control our minds. Repeating something til we are all calm.
    I just hope that when the time comes some of us will fight. We don't have to know everything to see our best interest isn't in mind. It's our place to buck. These times took a long time coming. It was all set up and planned so we'd fear the boogeyman. Now we're under control while the psychotic ideas of the super rich unfold before our eyes. You're wrong if you don't make a stand.
    Most ppl are so blind thinking Jesus is coming since there is already some world order via global warming til they've lost touch with reality. The past controls the future. The future of this world is all based on lies and greed. Violence is the only way to change it. The ones in charge are using violence. :/

  5. anonymous
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    Nov 22nd 2010 report

    The song is about movements for change and how the elite suppress them by brainwashing the masses "Networks at work, keepin' people calm" and removing key individuals "He turned the power to the have-nots, And then came the shot".

    Martin Luther King and Malcolm X being the obvious examples referred to in the song and how despite the "fury that they had in '66" following X's assassination nothing has been done to change the status quo. Zack is releasing his frustration with this and pleading with his audience to "Wake Up" and see the robber barons for what they are.

    "I think I heard a shot" could be interpreted a couple of ways but when considering the closing line of the song I believe this is Zack having hope that the gun will soon be aimed at the heads of those in the seats of power "cause what you reap is what you sow".

    The quotes towards the end of the song come straight from the transcripts of official FBI COINTELPRO documents with the first one talking specifically about King. The second, to remove them when they become to powerful. Like they did with King "When he spoke out on Vietnam" in his speech "Beyond Vietnam -- A Time to Break Silence" a year before his death.

    "As I have walked among the desperate, rejected, and angry young men, I have told them that Molotov cocktails and rifles would not solve their problems. I have tried to offer them my deepest compassion while maintaining my conviction that social change comes most meaningfully through nonviolent action. But they ask -- and rightly so -- what about Vietnam? They ask if our own nation wasn't using massive doses of violence to solve its problems, to bring about the changes it wanted. Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today -- my own government." Martin Luther King, Jr.

  6. anonymous
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    Aug 1st 2010 report

    "This song is about movements, and how when they start to get strong, the leaders of the movements are assassinated. Particulars: Set the groove Then stick and move like I was Cassius That refers to Mohammad Ali, who was aka Cassius Clay. He was good friends with Malcolm X. "

    yup I think you're right but not assassinating leaders of movements but 'discouraging' them. But the song is not only about movements but about federal government acting in general.

    "Networks at work, keepin' people calm
    Ya know they murdered X
    And tried to blame it on Islam"

    it's about Malcolm X for sure but does ratm refer to his pilgrimage to Mecca and the change of his racial beliefs?

  7. determinator557
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    Nov 7th 2008 report

    This song is about movements, and how when they start to get strong, the leaders of the movements are assassinated.


    Set the groove
    Then stick and move like I was Cassius

    That refers to Mohammad Ali, who was aka Cassius Clay. He was good friends with Malcolm X.

  8. anonymous
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    Feb 11th 2008 report

    My interpretation of this song is that the government uses violence to keep us subdued if we were only to fight back we could be free.

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