fan, and presumably Exodus fan, James Evans posted to Facebook some of the lyrics to the Exodus song “Class Dismissed (A Hate Primer),” and has been arrested for terroristic threatening. The lyrics he posted are:
Student bodies lying dead in the halls, a blood splattered treatise of hate. Class dismissed is my hypothesis, gun fire ends in debate.
People post all sorts of stuff like this and normally nothing happens. In this case, multiple agencies received calls from concerned citizens, which raised red flags and led to Evans’ arrest. The warrant under which Evans was arrested states that “he threatened to kill students and or staff at school.”
Obviously Exodus members are concerned, and Evans’ sister is surprised that an arrest like this could be made. I don’t think anyone should be surprised in this post-911, Department of Homeland Security, National Security Agency era. The problem is that it’s not consistent. Anyone posting anything threatening needs to be arrested or none at all. Right?
Exodus’ Gary Holt has come out with the following statement:
The idea that an individual in this great country of ours could be arrested for simply posting lyrics to a song is something I never believed could happen in a free society. James Evans was simply posting lyrics to a band he likes on Facebook, and he was locked up for it. The song ‘Class Dismissed (A Hate Primer)’ was written as a view through the eyes of a madman and in no way endorses that kind of fucked up behavior. It was the Virginia Tech massacre perpetrated by Seung-Hui Cho that was the subject and inspiration to write the song, one in which we put the brakes on playing it live after the Sandy Hook shooting, as we did not want to seem insensitive.
As some of us in Exodus are parents, of course these things hit close to home, it’s every parent’s worst fear. These moments are the stuff of nightmares, and life, as well as music, isn’t always pretty. But when we start to overreact to things like lyrics by any band, including Exodus, and start arresting people, we are caving in to paranoia and are well on our way to becoming an Orwellian society.
What do you think: Are the grounds for Evans’ arrest? Have his rights been violated? Has the law taken his post out of context? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.
Rock Hard \m/