Joe Walsh, took to Twitter Wednesday to announce that he is withdrawing From a “concert event” on Monday, July 18th in Cleveland, OH because he was misled into believing it was a “non-partisan event to benefit the families of American veterans.” It turned out, he said, to be “a launch for the Republican National Convention.”
And Walsh said he won’t be there because he won’t have any part in the “the rampant vitriol, fear-mongering and bullying” in the Republican campaigns.
Apparently, Republicans feel if they can’t steal music from people who can’t stand what they’re doing, they’ll just trick the musicians themselves into going along with them. It didn’t work in the case of Joe Walsh.
His statement in full:
April 20, 2016 – “It was my understanding that I was playing a concert which was a non partisan event to benefit the families of American veterans on Monday, July 18 in Cleveland. The admat I approved said this specifically. Today it was announced that this event is, in fact, a launch for the Republican National Convention. In addition, my name is to be used to raise sponsorship dollars for convention-related purposes. Therefore, I must humbly withdraw my participation in this event with apologies to any fans or veterans and their families that I might disappoint.
I am very concerned about the rampant vitriol, fear-mongering and bullying coming from the current Republican campaigns. It is both isolationist and spiteful. I cannot in good conscience endorse the Republican party in any way. I will look at doing a veteran related benefit concert later this year.”
The Republican Party has a history of trying to co-opt popular culture for their culture war policies, which is sort of amusing when you consider what some of the music they are trying to steal is really about. Here, however, they are trying to steal the musician himself, to lend legitimacy to their growing legacy of hate.
Joe Walsh chose not to lend his name to what the GOP is selling. No doubt the effort will continue – Speaker Paul Ryan announced Thursday that he is holding what is certain to be an interesting Town Hall with millennials at the Georgetown Institute of Politics and Public Service on April 27.
However heavy-handed and persistent their efforts, the Republican effort to appropriate popular culture and its music and icons, seems doomed to fail as young people continue turning away from the Republican Party in droves.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.