Bernard DuBray, Superintendent of Fort Zumwald North High School in St. Louis has decided that the song "White Rabbit" by Jefferson Airplane just has too many drug related references in its lyrics to be part of the school band's act; this according to The St. Louis Post-Dispatch http://web1.stlnet.com/postnet/ Wednesday, September 23, 1998. The band was supposed to play the Jefferson Airplane song along with other classic hits such as, "Knights in White Satin" by the Moody Blues and "Roundabout" by Yes at local and regional sporting events and band competitions.
Although the high school band is instrumental and thus does not sing ANY lyrics, DuBray thought that "the lyrics are pretty explicit" and didn't want "to give the wrong idea about drugs." He thought some listeners might get offended were the band to play the song. This is in contrast to the protests of DuBray's decision by some parents at a recent board meeting. The parents realize that the song is not a drug anthem but rather just a classic song from the 60's.
The band's director, Rob Babel offered no comment on DuBray's action and praised his band members for doing an "outstanding job" despite the fact that the continuity of the performance was lessened by the removal of the song.
By what we have learned from this incident, DuBray's actions lead us at Rock Out Censorship to believe that he has lost touch with not only his students, but also with the parents in the Fort Zumwalt area. A song that Babel calls "an outstanding piece of music" had to be lost and the students' performance compromised simply because of another case of drug hysteria. High School kids are not idiots. DuBray has insulted the students of North High School in Fort Zumwalt for failing to realize this. Students are thinking individuals and can make decisions for themselves EVEN IF the lyrics to "White Rabbit" were scrolled across the scoreboard at the football games.
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St. Louis Post-Dispatch: http://web1.stlnet.com/postnet/Wednesday, September 23, 1998
Mass MIC: http://www.massmic.com/mmic.html