The Washington Post

Pepper-spray cop ballad sung by Harry Shearer, voice of Mr. Burns

The pepper-spray cop meme draws closer to the end of its 15 minutes with a new song by one of the writers of “This is Spinal Tap.” “Ballad of the Pepper Spray Cop,” by Harry Shearer, tells the story of a young boy growing up to become the face of Occupy law enforcement techniques gone wrong. Some lyrics: “They may be sittin’ / it’s blood they’ll be spittin’ / when they come up against the pepper spray cop.”

View Photo Gallery: Lt. John Pike, photographed pepper spraying passive protesters at U.C. Davis, has become the subject of a meme inserting him in great moments in history and art history.

Shearer, known for his work on Saturday Night Live and his role as Derek Smalls in Spinal Tap, provides the voices for several characters on The Simpsons, including the decidedly 1 percent Mr. Burns. He hosts also Le Show, a comedy radio show, where the song was debuted.

“When push comes to shove / what you need isn’t love / it’s a spritz from above / from the pepper spray cop.”

Shearer isn’t the first to turn the pepper spray cop’s saga into a song. Andrew Lusk wrote an upbeat pop song that begins, “Hey kids, sorry I pepper-sprayed you / sorry about your friend’s chemical burns too.”


Pepper-spray cop works his way through art history

Images of Occupy protesters being pepper-sprayed raises questions

Occupy’s 84-year-old pepper spray victim: Is this the most iconic image of the movement?

Maura Judkis covers culture, food, and the arts for the Weekend section and Going Out Guide.


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