I wrote this song about one of our fans.
He was an average guy in his late teens, massively enthusiastic about our music and playing in his own band. There were a few troubles at home, and his life and prospects went through a bad patch. I saw him – in the space of a year – go from posting some fairly innocent points about border control on social media, to sharing some pretty questionable memes about refugees, to arguing with all and sundry that our country was fit to burst with Muslim scavengers. The most poignant moment in the whole sorry spectacle was when he passionately argued with Laila that Muslim immigrants should never have been allowed into this country. Which, as the daughter of Muslim immigrants, would mean she was never born here at all – a factor of the debate he seemed staggeringly unaware of. The song was written as an attempt to communicate with him on the level on which we first engaged him; our music. I hope the video and the cover art take this concept one step further. The people that you demonise are human beings.
“If you want to hate me, here I am”.
At the end of the video, inspired by spiteful social media propaganda and the lure of brotherhood within a ostensible cause, Johnny Smith reaches his personal nadir in his journey from an average, down-on-his-luck lad, to a hooligan attacking a refugee in the park. He lives his online life as a perpetual Sharer of vile, twisted memes, peddling lies and hatred towards people that are fleeing terror and persecution and need the help of a country socially and economically capable of looking after them.
On Thursday, Thomas Mair, inspired by the twisted ideology of Britain First and the skewed dogma and agenda of the mainstream right-wing press, reached his public nadir in his journey from a family man with mental health issues, to a murderer, putting a bullet in politician Jo Cox. He lived his entire life to absorb and amplify the fear, bigotry, and ignorance that far right groups are incubating in the midst of our country. He acts as a grim warning and full-stop at the end of the sentence of how far this road of anger and hatred can lead.
Every meme that has been shared condemning refugees, every warped statistic concocted, every group touting that are defending our nation, every sensationalistic story that demonises people who need our help, and every ‘correction’ of inaccurate news that hides at the bottom of the second page of newspapers so cynical that they print lies to sell copies then recount them the next day with no compunction or shame at the carnage they cause, has lead to the death of Jo Cox. Her blood is all over the hands of those that read, regurgitate and Share this absolutely fucking nonsense.
We can’t carry on down this road. Britain, wake the fuck up.