Once Upon A Time, folks hated Jews, as history tells And spread their hate with ugly lies, that Jews ate babes and poisoned wells They feature now as villains still, in phantoms of conspiracy That doesn't mean they always will--we can grow better by degree We've come so far, don't falter yet-- There is more mountain left to climb Justice is our common debt, But as we struggle and we sweat, Remember, Once Upon A Time. Once Upon A Time black people suffered life as slaves Whites said they weren't really men, but lazy thieves, and savage knaves To purge the nation of that crime, we came apart in Civil War Descendants of that cruel time, still seek fair treatment on this shore Once Upon A Time were women chattel one might note Who couldn't read or hold a job, or own our property, or vote And by those folk who wish us ill, with threats of violence we're checked; We've won the vote but struggle still for equal wages and respect. Once Upon A Time, gays suffered death if they were caught Their crime was that they dared to love, with every glance with danger fraught. But we've made progress on our hates, and those who would their love fulfill Can marry now in fourteen states. We can do better--and we will. Once Upon A Time, the shadows sheltered not a few The trans, the atheist, the witch, more people than we ever knew. I am an atheist, and so, it's easy to conceal and cope My very neighbors do not know, but I look back, and live in hope.