Crowdfunding is all the rage these days. Over the course of just the past six months or so, we’ve seen artists use fan contributions to fund albums, tours, music videos, vans, and even veterinary bills.
But this is, to the best of my knowledge, the first attempt a metal musician has come to fans, hat in hand, asking for help to file a lawsuit.
See, as you no doubt recall, last month Varg Vikernes and his wife, Marie Cachet, were arrested by French authorities on suspicion of planning a “massacre” and being “likely to prepare a large-scale act of terrorism.” They were released a couple of days later and no charges were brought against them. Still, they’re pretty cranky about the whole incident, which is understandable. And they’d like to sue the French government… but they don’t have the necessary funds.
Here is the very long explanation Vikernes has posted his blog:
We have had the time to think over what happened to us in this «terrorist» case, we have talked about it with others, and we realise that the «French» authorities had no reason to arrest us in the first place. We had done nothing wrong, and they never had any evidence suggesting otherwise. They shot our door open, traumatized our children, threw my pregnant wife and me in holding cells and kept us there for two-three days, placed our scared children in the care of their grand parents, completely messed up our archives with official documents and such, took my USB pens and hard drives, confiscated all our firearms, ammo, many tools, decorative swords, my helmet, two spears, my wife’s flint knives (?) and all sorts of other things too, most of them with great affection value, and they decleared that we no longer had the right to own or possess any type of weapons: everything, all of this for no good reason whatsoever.
To make it worse the grand parents of our children tried to take them away from us. Instead of helping us out in this difficult time, they wrote a letter to a judge and tried to take our children from us, because they don’t like our lifestyle or political-religious ideas. So when we were to get our children back we had to go to court, argue and fight to have a judge tell them to give our children back. Thankfully she did, and of course I may add, but it cost us a lot, both in energy, worry and even money.
When that was over our PayPal account was frozen, apparently because our bank account, in HSBC, was closed – on orders from their HQ in Paris, and – again – without any reason. Not without any valid reason, but without any reason at all. Marie has to open up a new PayPal account connected to another bank account, in order for us to continue to sell the «ForeBears» DVD and make a living from that. We now have an account in a new bank, so that is fixed, and now Marie has to spend several days working to transfer all our payments (for the rental house, the cell phones and such) to the new account – a task made so much harder by the fact that the police left our archive in a big mess.
Naturally we are angry, and we don’t want not tolerate this. We want to sue the authorities for arresting us for no good reason whatsoever, doing so in the most brutal way possible and with children present, and also for without any reason taking away our right to own or even possess weapons. Marie has a crime record white as snow, so there is no reason for them to take away her right and freedom to own weapons. I have a record in Norway, from 1993 and 2003, but I have never done anything criminal in France, and I can own most weapons even in Norway if I want to, so they have no good reason to take away my right and freedom to own weapons either. Especially not when they have done so under such circumstances.
The only problem is that we can not afford to sue them, and we see no other solution to this than to ask for help from you. It pains me much to do so, and I have struggled a lot with myself to make me do this, but I think this is the right thing to do right now. They have done everything they could to make sure we could not afford to sue, so I think they really don’t want us to. We ask for help to sue from you, from individuals probably not directly affected by this case, because we believe that we are fighting not only for our rights and freedom, but also for the rights and freedom of every other citizen in France, and perhaps also in other European countries, who also risk being subjected to this type of treatment in the future. We need to tell the authorities that we don’t accept this and that what they do is illegal. We can not allow them to abuse their power like that and get away with it. This time they did this to us, we don’t know what else they might do to us in the future if we just let them get away with what they did this time, and the next time it can be your neighbour’s turn. Or your friend’s turn. Or someone in your family’s turn. Or your turn.
«First they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.
Then they came for the socialists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a socialist.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Catholic.
Then they came for me,
and there was no one left to speak for me.»
These days they come first for the Pagan nationalists, and I don’t think they will ever come for the Jews, but even if you are not a Pagan and/or a nationalist you might understand that you should speak up for those who are. I ask you all to help us speak up for our rights and freedom, and for the rights and freedom of all others too. Before it is too late.
If you want to and can afford to help us economically you can get the neccessary information from this PDF. When we have the new PayPal account up and going we will include a “donate” or “support” button on the website. Please wait for that if you feel that is the best. Even a tiny contribution will help us, and «many small creeks make a river deep». I regret having to ask you for this, but I hope you understand. HailaR WôðanaR!
While this is the very, very rare instance where I feel empathy for Vikernes, I gotta say, his use of Niemöller’s (not “Niemüller,” as Vikernes states) famous poem is pretty offensive, especially given the context: Niemöller was specifically speaking out against the Nazis, and for a known anti-semite like Vikernes to utilize the sentiment and claim that “I don’t think they will ever come for the Jews” is dick.
(Dunno if Varg has ever read a history book, but they actually have come for the Jews. Like, a BUNCH of times. Even if you don’t count that whole pesky Holocaust thing. Pogroms were basically a national pastime in some countries.)
So, there you have it. Vikernes almost being reasonable before going off and revealing his true unwiped-asshole-brown colors. You’re obviously free to give him your money if you want, but you’re also free to slam your dick in a door. I wouldn’t recommend either.
Thanks: Saul Hudson