Members of the metal grotesquerie Slipknot are trying to distance themselves from a South African teenager who attacked four people at his school with a sword (!) while wearing a homemade version of one of the band’s masks; one person died, while the other three sustained injuries. Perhaps unsurprisingly, a few members of the chattering classes over there are quick to blame the murders on the “Satanic music” the teen listened to in his out-of-school hours, and Slipknot is getting particular scrutiny thanks to the man’s choice of costume.
Pierre Eksteen, who is in charge of a school support network for children, said “Satanic” music was probably the cause of the attack.
“He came here camouflaged as the guy from Slipknot. We know the wrong kind of music and drugs have bad effects. Young people need to be informed of the effects of bad Satanic music,” said Eksteen.
Thankfully, the superintendent of the school district has a slighly more measured take:
Senior Superintendent Gerard Labuschagne was responding to claims that a matric pupil stabbed a fellow pupil yesterday because “Satan told him to kill the children”.
Locals claim the boy was influenced by heavy metal band Slipknot.
But Labuschagne said: “Whenever there is a murder, people jump to conclusions, and always God or Satan told the killers to do it. These notions shouldn’t be taken seriously because it is straightforward: someone, of their own free will, can kill another person .”
Oh my gosh, a reasoned response to a tragedy from someone in an official position? What do they put in the water over in South Africa, and can it be shipped here ASAP?
Meanwhile, a rep of the band’s label said they want nothing to do with the case, and hey, that mask wasn’t necessarily sanctioned Slipknot merchandise! “We’ve had no confirmation that it was, in fact, a Slipknot mask. The band is not going to respond,” the rep told the South African paper The Times. I guess they don’t want to even find out which “guy from Slipknot” the killer was dressed up as.