Ohio Journalist Blames The Acacia Strain For Dayton Shooting
One would assume, after all these years, that we can all agree that blaming bands and songs for the horrible acts of others is complete bullshit. From the attempts to scapegoat Ozzy Osbourne and Judas Priest for teen suicide in the ’80s, to Marilyn Manson and Rammstein becoming the boogeymen behind the Columbine shootings in the late ’90s, the crusades against music are always rabid and uninformed, and always look stupid and grossly sensational in hindsight. However, Ohio journalist Jim Heath has now blame metalcore stalwarts The Acacia Strain for the recent shooting in Dayton, Ohio.
The shooting, which came only hours after the shopping center shooting in El Paso, Texas, has left nine dead. But as Metal Injection reports, local journalist Jim Heath figures that the motivations behind the shooting were obviously related to the T-shirt worn by the assailant:
Suspect in #Dayton shooting was wearing shorts with a black sweatshirt that read: "No heart to fear, no soul to ste… https://t.co/xq9Mj2uelE— Jim Heath (@JimHeathTV) Sun Aug 04 09:48:45 +0000 2019
The song in question, Ramirez, appears on the band’s 2010 album Wormwood.
In response to Heath’s scapegoating, Acacia Strain frontman Vincent Bennett tweeted the following:
We will be taking action to help the families of the victims however we can.— low-carb vincent. (@xDIAMONDCUTx) August 4, 2019
Vincent’s point is important: there is no excuse for this. The Dayton shooter, like other mass murderers, was most likely a mentally ill man who was steeped in a culture of violence. The idea that the music he listened to is responsible for the deaths of those he killed is ludicrous. According to the numbers on Spotify, millions of people have listened to The Acacia Strain, and none of them have gone on a shooting spree. Jim Heath obviously wants to push the lazy narrative that loud, angry music inspires brutal people.
The Dayton shooting occurred shortly after the El Paso shooting that left twenty dead. That tragedy occurred during blink-182’s day off from their current tour, resulting in the band being ‘locked down’ in their hotel room. On top of that, the band cancelled the show they were meant to play tonight in El Paso, in solidarity with the community.
Whether the Acacia Strain will respond further to this story remains to be seen. In any event, everyone at Kerrang! sends our hearts out to the victims of the Dayton shooting and their friends, family, and loved ones.
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