Five Finger Death Punch guitarist Zoltan Bathory has denied the band’s new music video for the song ‘Living The Dream’ has an anti-mask message.
Almost immediately the release of the video, 5FDP were accused of taking an anti-mask stance with the video, which includes a scene where mask-wearers are given a button that says “Compliant” and features the hammer-and-sickle logo often associated with communism. The female political figure handing out the buttons, meanwhile, doesn’t have to wear a mask, as her button reads “Exempt”. There are also zombies hoarding toilet paper, and gimps who are walked on a chain by the “Exempt” leader. The American flag can be seen later seen in the video with the stars replaced by the hammer-and-sickle logo.
Guitarist Zoltan Bathory released a statement: “As much as some news sites used ‘anti-mask’ as a clickbait title (And I must applaud the capitalist in them or I myself would be a hypocrite) Let’s make this crystal clear: In a fictional story, Amongst shopping cart zombies, Tide Pod eating fat superheroes and all the other metaphors, why would anyone think the mask scene isn’t one.
“The scene in question is not about the masks… it’s NOT an Anti-Mask message… in fact you can go to FiveFingerDeathPunch.com right now and buy some cool ones…
“If I must explain this, the whole video is in the frame work of fiction, a dystopian nightmare of one of the founding fathers – right before he signs the constitution.
“Just as I prefaced it: We as artists, have a unique opportunity to portray and ridicule the absurd to prevent it from becoming reality.
“The mask segments are about hypocrisy on the highest level. When the rules are made for you but those who made them are exempt. Pretty much the standard in all dictatorships and totalitarian regimes (I had the displeasure of growing up in one) hence the reference.
“I often say, ask us!!! The immigrants… the Cubans, the Venezuelans, the North Koreans, anyone from the former Soviet block… Talk to us and we will tell you …. WE were lucky, because we had a place to escape to. We are fortunate that we could come here…. but If America is gone, where will you go? We immigrants also remember how our freedom slipped away, how our rights were ripped from us, how we were kept under the thumb and in fear of our own governments. So maybe, just maybe… we have valuable experience we can tell you about, we can forewarn you of the things we have seen before.
“So We the people must do everything in our power to stay free as a society. We must prevent the rise of tyranny in all shapes and forms, we must resist the would be dictators and the totalitarian ideals. This is what the founding fathers worried about and tried to prevent by creating the constitution.
“Believe it. America is a miracle, and I LOVE this country… and I will never shut up about it.
“Anyway – not anti mask – and If you reduced this entire video to that scene and missed the metaphor behind it … Well… the good news is – It is STILL America so you have the right to have and even print your own opinion.”