CAN ROCK & ROLL STOP THE WAR? ... & WHAT YOU CAN DO!
ROCK & ROLL has a long, proud history of resistance against the shedding of blood of young soldiers and innocent civilians in senseless military excursions abroad. BOB DYLAN, THE BEATLES, CCR, STEPPENWOLF, and others provided a strong musical momentum to the youth of the 60's marching in the streets as a moral counter-force to the genocidal war being waged by the Pentagon in Vietnam.
Today, rumblings are being made suggesting a new outbreak of anti-war fervor within the Rock & Roll community. The "GIVE PEACE A CHANCE" remake and video release was a nice start.
Even stronger voices against the war are being raised however by the likes of SLAYER's Tom Araya on stage during their current tour, and ironically enough (from the other end of the spectrum by NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK!) This should come as no surprise, really, as the NEW KIDS have always taken a strong anti-racist, anti-censorship stance. Their recent appearance on a TV awards show, where an indignant Donnie, dressed in a black tee-shirt which carried the message 'WAR SUCKS" yelled "STOP THE WAR" during the performance, was the strongest public statement made by a band to date.
Despite recent misguided pro-war statements like those of MEGADETH's Dave Mustaine, the general feeling among rockers appear more reasoned, with Mark Slaughter lamenting, "I don't think people realize--war--that can also mean death."
Rock & Roll fans have also been taking the lead in the struggle against the war, linking the attempts to censor rock music with the governments attempts to eliminate anti-war dissent from the media and the national life.
One recent meeting in L.A. called by ROCK & ROLL CONFIDENTIAL developed a plan of action for rockers, extracted below.
1. REQUEST ANTI-WAR SONGS on the radio, in clubs, and at retail stores.
2. BUY ANTI-WAR RECORDS & VIDEOS.
3. PASS OUT ANTI-CENSORSHIP MATERIAL AT ANTI-WAR RALLIES, teach-ins, and forums. Publicize the link between music censorship and war, for example, Tipper Gore's husband Al was the only "liberal" democrat to vote for the war while Susan Baker's husband, Secretary of State James Baker, is actually waging the war.