San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec




San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

Manipulation Plagues Bad Religion Show

People are running around, slamming into each other and takingtheir hormonal aggressions out on complete strangers. A guy isyelling about how much this world sucks over a microphone.

Thisisn’t a protest rally at the Democratic National Convention, this ispunk rock, and the titans of punk graced us with their presence atthe Cox Arena Wednesday, October 25.

Blues will grab your soul, Al Green will set the mood and punkrock gets you fired up. All music has its purpose, and punk’s is toget you going. Bad Religion is the master of this, but they are alsodangerously good at doctoring your vision.

The concert was off the hook, and I was in the midst of all thecraziness. I was having a blast, but at the same time an eerie senseof danger was looming in the air. No, I wasn’t worried about thecrowd dropping me as I crowd surfed or getting torn apart in the moshpit. Well, there were a couple of guys in the pit that scared me, butthe danger I sensed was of a different nature. It was of the effectsof the manipulation and propaganda that was freely flowing.

As an idealist, I agree with Bad Religion on virtually nothing. Iwould pass them off as complete idiots who don’t know their effect onpeople, but what most people don’t realize is the lead singer of BadReligion is anything but an idiot. Greg Gaffin, the lead singer andbrains of the band has a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology from CornellUniversity, and is rumored to have an IQ of a 180. He is also theleader of one of the most influential and longest-standing punk bandsever.

My best guess would be he knows exactly what he’s doing.

Whether you accept Bad Religion’s lyrics as the horrendous truth,or a brutal attack on your ideals, you get worked up. The guitar andthe beat seem to grab you and throw you in the pit. Before you knowit, you are taking out your aggressions about your parents, pubertyand government on total strangers. The only catch is the strangersare doing it too. Pushed around, flailing around, you “dance” on inmasochistic delight. This mosh pit is a “Fight Club” of sorts — aforum to let loose and take out your life pains on another who feelslike you.

You may be sweaty and bruised, but like a hamster that got hisexercise on a wheel, you feel better. The next song plays and thereyou go again, the repetition in the guitar and the violent shoving ingeneral puts you in a trance. That’s where the propaganda comes in.Through the power of suggestion your hate builds, and the lyricscreep into your method of thinking and behavior.

Their hatred for society is drilled into you both literally andfiguratively. The blaring music “drills” it’s way into your mind, andthe hate is drilled into you by some guy with “White Pride” tattooedacross his back.

At first it was all fun and games, you blew off some steam. Whatyou failed to realize is steam is from fire, and you were justthrowing a few more logs on. The music stops but you are left angry.What started out as a release has turned into a lifestyle, and youare left holding onto your anger. You are always prying at scabs,keeping wounds open and creating scars.

Hate has become your basis for reality.

Now that you are an outcast and have rejected this society, whowill accept you? Bad Religion will, so let’s buy some CDs, T-shirtsand concert tickets. Lets find some friends in this subculture andstart a band that only makes the situation worse.

Does this make Greg Gaffin Tyler Durdin? Is he a psychotic leaderthat uses confused sheep to execute his sinister plots? That’s whatis scary. I’m not saying he is using mind control for anything morethan selling CDs, but could he do more? How far over the edge couldhe push these people? Does he realize his form of “music” has madeuseless idiots of many fans?

I’m not saying this happens to everyone. I saw more friendly facesthan misled youth who are bitter and angry. Some were having a goodtime letting loose and being wild, but I could see the hate creepingin. A little got in everyone, only some people can’t deal with it,and they end up wasted.

Does this make Bad Religion pure, unadulterated evil? Well, theydo capitalize off of the confusion of teen-agers, but so does prettymuch everybody on MTV. Yes, the beloved Britney Spears is richbecause of young girls’ insecurity and Eminem isn’t homeless becauseway too many people have cultural identity crises.

In defense of Bad Religion, teen-agers do need a release, maybeeven a “Fight Club.” You can learn a lot by riding the crowd orgetting punched by a Nazi, but some times these lessons are too harshand you get more than you ask for. These “life lessons” can wasteyour youth, destroy your mind and end your life early. Punk is anexperiment in the science lab of life. Chemistry labs can bepotentially dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing, but doingyour homework can eliminate almost all of the risk. The rightingredients lead to a solution, but the wrong mixture of chemicalscan blow you sky high.

Punk can be fun and harmless, but also dangerous and manipulative.Go to the punk rock show, have happy mosh pitting, but realize whathappens, and avoid getting caught in the “Generator” that pumps out a”Recipe for Hate” that will cause you to “Suffer.”

–Joe Zarro is an undeclared freshman. Send e-mail to daletter2000@hotmail.com

–This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of TheDaily Aztec.

Activate Search
San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913
Manipulation Plagues Bad Religion Show