Avenged Sevenfold’s M. Shadows On Why He Stands For Black Lives Matter
Joining the many members of the rock and metal scene who have been voicing their support for Black Lives Matter, Avenged Sevenfold’s M. Shadows has explained why he stands with the movement – and how people’s response to that phrase should not then be, ‘All Lives Matter’.
Writing an op-ed for Revolver, the frontman says that his reasoning for speaking out amid the George Floyd protests is that he has “no interest in sending a neutral message proclaiming ‘riots aren’t the answer’ or ‘hurting innocent people doesn’t help the cause’ ”.
“We all recognise that, and if that’s the only message you are focussed on during this dire time then I ask you to dig deeper,” he urges.
In regards to Black Lives Matter in particular, the frontman continues, “If someone says, ‘Black Lives Matter’, and your response is ‘All Lives Matter’ then maybe take a look at the core of that reaction. Every life is valuable – that is a given – but right now the lives of the oppressed require our undivided attention. Yes, the police have an incredibly daunting job, and many uphold the integrity of their position, but if that is your point of contention, I say again: the lives of the oppressed require our undivided attention right now.”
M. also addresses the fact that the band’s fanbase “is made up of very few black Americans”, reasoning that it is why he feels “more compelled than ever” to write this piece.
“I am aware that in the past Avenged has antagonised with some of our lyrics and imagery,” he concludes. “We have also used confederate flags in our artwork while paying tribute to artists we grew up listening to or simply trying to start controversy. I’m sure we will be called out, and rightfully so, by people reading this. No excuses. But everyone grows up at some point, and I feel grateful that we have an audience that has allowed us to evolve with them. I can only hope that the rock and metal community, and the white community at large, can move forward with an open mind and come together to help out our fellow Americans in this desperate time.”
Read M. Shadows’ full piece here.
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