When I think I’ve seen it all I am wrong. Please read what happen to terrorist victims Eagles of Death Metal.
His offense? Trying to make sense of the senseless violence of Nov. 13, 2015, when Islamic terrorists stormed the venue in the middle of the band’s set and killed 89 concertgoers.
In a recent interview, Hughes committed such blasphemies as noting that “political correctness is killing our natural instinct and making us vulnerable,” attacking “affluent white kids who have grown up in a liberal curriculum from the time they were in kindergarten . . . inundated with . . . lofty notions that are just hot air,” and musing that the Paris attacks were aided by employees of the venue.
All things considered, pretty mild stuff.
Not to the left, of course. To them, it’s more important to hysterically rush to the defense of the “marginalized” group, regardless of how preposterous it looks. Sure, Hughes also heroically tried to save other concertgoers and was later hospitalized after pieces of “teeth and human bone” were lodged in his face, but what really matters is that he briefly drifted away from some nebulous conception of “tolerance.”
How the music industry has changed.
When David Bowie died this year, he was rightfully remembered as a deeply gifted artist who made a meaningful and lasting impact on music. There wasn’t much talk about his brief, and bizarre, flirtations with fascism.
In the middle of a 1976 interview with Rolling Stone, Bowie went on a tangent about how he believed “very strongly in fascism” and that “Hitler was the first rock star.” It’s not regarded as a high point in Bowie’s career, but it’s also not considered particularly relevant.
Bowie disavowed his comments years later, saying he was “out of [his] mind” and “totally crazed.” The incident has been mostly forgotten — it’s not as though you hear someone object to a Bowie song on the radio because he once praised fascist media manipulation.
When Bowie seemingly endorsed a genocidal tyrant, most people probably chalked it up to drug use or a lame attempt to create an edgy persona. Forty years later, a man can’t be permitted to criticize radical Islamism, despite being a victim of a terrorist act carried out in its name, without his livelihood being threatened.
The common sense applied to Bowie is as much a relic as his bell-bottom jeans.
Worse, it’s unclear what exactly these music festivals even hoped to accomplish by forbidding the Eagles of Death Metal from performing. Something tells me the band wasn’t initially targeted because the terrorists thought Hughes might hold critical opinions of Islam. Nor has total capitulation to the assassin’s veto worked very well for Europe.
It’s not a stretch to imagine that the band was initially targeted because its music represents everything radical Islam loathes: the West’s tradition of free expression and, well, having a good time.
And losing these things is precisely what’s at stake if artists don’t stand up to the kind of behavior displayed by these festival organizers.
Canceling the Eagles of Death Metal’s performances wasn’t a virtuous act. All it did was punish a band because of its frontman’s grieving process, disappoint a whole bunch of fans and further embolden extremists.
I suppose ISIS might appreciate the cancellations, but you know what it would appreciate more? Outlawing Western music entirely. Maybe it thinks it’s one step closer to that — and who could blame the terrorists for that assumption after the cowardice on display?
Sadly, the latest series of attacks in Europe has brought out the absolute worst examples of this kind of thinking. Shortly after the Charlie Hebdo shootings, some leftists didn’t hesitate to wonder whether the publication’s staff members were ultimately responsible for the attacks because they dared satirize Mohammad.
Already, some, like Donovan Farley of Paste Magazine, support the festival’s decision because “France is attempting to heal” (unlike Hughes?) and argue that allowing the band to play could potentially “alienate young Muslims.” No concern is found for the actual victims of the attacks, only the hypothetically offended.
Cowards. And besides, who wants to listen only to music that has been OK’d by a bunch of spineless liberals and their culture of censorship? Doesn’t that seem kind of antithetical to what rock ’n’ roll is all about?
Just as the Paris attacks were seen as an attack on all of Western society, the cancellation of the Eagles of Death Metal should be considered an assault on free expression.