Civil Liberties

Kentucky Man Arrested for 'Terroristic Threatening' After Posting Thrash Metal Lyrics to Facebook


Another day, another idiotic freak out over a harmless Facebook post. The latest incident centers on 31-year-old James Evans of Kentucky, who had the temerity to share the lyrics from a song called "Class Dismissed (A Hate Primer)" by the thrash metal band Exodus. Here are the lyrics in question:

Student bodies lying dead in the halls, a blood splattered treatise of hate. Class dismissed is my hypothesis, gun fire ends in debate.

Via local outlet, here's what happened next:

Mike Drake, the Muhlenberg County school resource officer, says multiple agencies received calls concerned about the post.

So Evans was arrested for terroristic threatening.

The warrant says Evans was arrested because, "he threatened to kill students and or staff at school."

James' sister, Ashelynn, says while she doesn't agree with the song lyrics, she doesn't think her brother should have been arrested.

"Whenever we found out that he actually got arrested for lyrics, we were all shocked," said Ashelynn. "We couldn't believe that you could do that or get in trouble for that. I don't personally agree with the band or the music but I agree that you should have the choice to listen to it if you want to."

At music site Brooklyn Vegan, Exodus guitarist Gary Holt had this response:

"The idea that an individual in this great country of ours could be arrested for simply posting lyrics to a song is something I never believed could happen in a free society," states EXODUS guitarist Gary Holt. "James Evans was simply posting lyrics to a band he likes on Facebook, and he was locked up for it. The song 'Class Dismissed (A Hate Primer)' was written as a view through the eyes of a madman and in no way endorses that kind of fucked up behavior. It was the Virginia Tech massacre perpetrated by Seung-Hui Cho that was the subject and inspiration to write the song, one in which we put the brakes on playing it live after the Sandy Hook shooting, as we did not want to seem insensitive."

Gary continues, "As some of us in EXODUS are parents, of course these things hit close to home, it's every parent's worst fear. These moments are the stuff of nightmares, and life, as well as music, isn't always pretty. But when we start to overreact to things like lyrics by any band, including EXODUS, and start arresting people, we are caving in to paranoia and are well on our way to becoming an Orwellian society."