It is no secret that metal has been misunderstood in the mainstream since Black Sabbath’s first tri-tone. You would think there would be more acceptance by now, but there are still bizarre conspiracy theories, pastors declaring bands such as Pantera as satanic, and countless more. Accusations have progressed over the years linking serial killers such as the Night Stalker from the 80s to declaring Marilyn Manson’s music as a pivotal influence on the Columbine High School Massacre back in 1999.
Essentially, whenever tragedy or violence hits, heavy music is traditionally on top of the suspicion list. According to the Toronto Metro, the Calgary Police service issued a list detailing “signs of a child being part of a hate group.” Certain items on the list such as “sudden lack of interest in school,” “adopting new groups of friends and staying out late without any explanation,” “changing their appearance,” and “playing loud, heavy music with violent lyrics,” all appear to be normal teenage behaviors.
Calgary police spokesman Corin Odland addressed the reasoning behind heavy music on this list was because:
“We’re not saying all people who listen to rock music are part of hate groups, but there tends to be a correlation – people who are involved with hate groups tend to be involved in that kind of music.”
He also addressed that the meaning is meant to be in context with other items on the list including, “wearing or displaying Nazi propaganda,” which is mentioned towards the bottom.
Hate groups are expanding, which we have recently noticed following the events that took place in Charlottesville. However, placing blame on once again, music along with kids being kids will create more harm than good. And while there are certainly some Nazi (nope, we’re not calling them alt-right) heavy bands like Skrewdriver and some murkiness with NBSM bands, the majority of heavy bands don’t make you any more racist than any other genre of music.