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The MetalSucks Manifesto

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2016 has been a deeply troubling year (to put it mildly). The election of Donald J. Trump to the United States’ highest office is simply the cyanide cherry on top of an already-poisonous cake; long before November 8, bigots around the world had made attempts to hijack popular culture, complaining loudly and often violently about women and minorities taking lead roles in film franchises, video game culture, comic book storylines… and, of course, music. We’ve experienced this for ourselves over the past year time and again, having met with derision and physical threats against both the staff of MetalSucks and our families for such “crimes” as daring to point out when a metal musician makes hateful comments or endorses a demagogue.

If you think there’s no connection between the current battles being waged in the political sphere and the current battles being waged in the cultural sphere, you’re fooling yourself. Both fights stem from the same vile motivation: to maintain the status quo, no matter how hurtful that status quo is to so many human beings across the globe. Throughout history — not just American history, but world history — any time liberal ideals begin to take hold, conservatives, terrified of change, lash out with extreme malice. Donald Trump’s election, and the ongoing attempt to somehow ensure that popular art is made by heterosexual white men for heterosexual white men, is a story we’ve heard many times before. Which does not make it any less heartbreaking.

This being the case, it is time for all of us — ALL of us — to decide what we want metal to be. Do we want the genre, which has deep roots in proletariat ideals and political protest, to represent a voice for the legitimately disenfranchised, or a voice for insecurity-fueled intolerance? Do we want the music we all love to unite us, or divide us? Do we want metal to provide a healthy outlet for negative feelings, or to be the soundtrack for giving those feelings free reign and total control over ourselves, rationality be damned? Do we want all the anger inherent in our music to stand for something valid, or do we want it to simply be the whining complaints of those stuck in a state of arrested development?

We want to be clear about what we stand for here at MetalSucks (as if there were any doubt). With that in mind, we hereby present our manifesto:

  1. We have never been an unbiased media outlet, nor do we ever plan to become one.
  2. Those biases extend beyond the opinions of the bands and musicians we cover. We believe in progressive, liberal values, and we will wear those values on our sleeves through our writing.
  3. This website’s coverage extends beyond simply metal, and beyond simply music.
  4. We believe in an artist’s — and our — right to express political beliefs through their work. “Keep politics out of music” has no place here; politics and music are one in the same.
  5. Artists who espouse our values will continue to get preferential coverage.
  6. Artists who actively do not espouse our values will continue to get called out for it.
  7. You are free to disagree with us. Please continue to do so (tastefully and respectfully). Conversation is a good thing.
  8. Silence is complicity.
  9. Expressing our true feelings is more important than satisfying all corners of our readership and/or potential readership.
  10. We will not tolerate racism, misogyny or any form of bigotry or hate speech.
  11. We are proud SJWs.
  12. We will not be bullied.
  13. We will not tolerate hate speech or threats leveled at us, or at anyone who reads our site.

If you strongly disagree with any of the above to the point of intolerance, feel free to take your readership elsewhere. We will not miss you.

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