“Do something, anything you can to break this thing! If it’s broke, we can fix it. So, break it! And Now!”

Now Playing: 'Kill the Poor' - Dead Kennedys

By: Andrew Lyman

Forewarning: I don’t feel it’s my duty to recreate for you, bit by bit, the whole event that transpired. If you want to know what it was like, you should have been there. I feel it is more important, especially in the case of someone like Jello Biafra, to take the tone, the feeling, and the message and pass that on, rather than report what his hair looked like and what he was wearing (although his shirt in the second half was rather unsettling). That type of detail is insignificant. If I have one hope, it is to pass on thought rather than gossip. As was the message of the Hafler Trio: media is ours to do what we please with it. Until we realize that we control information, not visa versa, we will be bound by it. Take media, take events, take thoughts and do what you will with them. Manipulate them however you see fit. Don’t just be passive information receptacles; information is a weapon, a wand. Wield it; orchestrate our universe!

Is anyone pissed off out there? Pissed off enough to do anything about it? There are currently more atrocities (economic, humanitarian, cultural, musical, or otherwise) to keep most of us continually on the verge of snapping. You know the symptoms: explosions, gunfire, bottled water, cursing, manifestos taped to the wall scribbled in blood or crayon, black clothing, rock music, etc. Unfortunately, we’ve become far too good at not caring, or even worse, we think we care, and then think that is enough. These are the reasons why people like Jello Biafra are still important; they piss you off - enough to make you consider staying that way. It’s damn near impossible to listen to Biafra rattle on about our sad state of affairs (as he has consistently done for three decades now) without becoming incensed. As the evening progresses, you become increasingly aware of the impulse for immediate action. It gets to the point where it requires restraint to keep yourself from leaping from your chair and tearing off out of the venue into the night to zero in on the first symbol of corporate greed or governmental oppression that crosses your frantic path.

Biafra is particularly effective because he stresses innovation with our insurrection. Don’t just follow that initial impulse to storm out of the Lakeview; take that death energy and channel it into a creative way to do some real damage. Here’s the catch - positive damage. Creative damage. How the hell are we supposed to spark a revolution if our tactics are not revolutionary? It seems that, like everything else, revolution has become a commodity. You can go out and buy the radical package at your local punk shop. Sign up today to get great deals on the bands you have to listen to and the clothes you have to wear. Biafra is smart enough to know that real revolution is in the everyday. It has no boundaries, no tastes. It is non-exclusive. Engineer a better society, don’t just destroy this one. We live here. Good people live here. This is ours. You don’t allow other people come in and arrange your house and tell you what you can and can’t do in it, do you? Why would you suffer the same disrespect from the government? That is the point of revolution; the good honest people who are cast aside. Biafra was unfortunately cut short on the “fiery call to arms section” of his appearance at the Lakeview, but the point was still clear. “Do something, anything you can to break this thing! If it’s broke, we can fix it. So, break it! And Now!”

So fuck Jello Biafra! And fuck me, and fuck we, and fuck us! We, us, me, and you are the ones responsible for not doing anything. We are the ones who allow this to go on. We are the ones who talk shit at work everyday and come home or go out and go to sleep. This is in our hands, as it has always and will always be. Think about your role. Think about how you can do better. Think about what you can do. And, jesus, don’t ever stop having fun with it. The moment you start to take anything too seriously is the moment it becomes invalid. If we don’t make our revolutions out of fun, excitement, knowledge, and love (yeah, I fucking said it), then no good will ever come of them and we will be doomed to dismal repeating cycles of conflict and rage until we burn ourselves out and die sweating on our bellies, gasping for breathable air; the insignificant dry death of the most promising species to ever exist in this solar system. London Calling will never be heard again. Gravity’s Rainbow will never be read. Jello Biafra will cease to have ever existed. That is our current trajectory. I think there are still a few things to live for.

I haven’t read online, or anywhere else that the government was forcibly overthrown since the show. I haven’t heard reports of rioting in the streets. I haven’t witnessed any armed, unarmed, or disarmed insurrections. I haven’t done anything, and it doesn’t appear anyone else has either. The fire is still there but it’s just a flame now; somewhere hidden in my guts. I hope everyone else who was there that night, I hope anyone who reads this article still harbors tiny little flames deep within themselves that can be used to start a raging fire when we’re all ready, and we’re all pissed off enough to finally do something about it.


All opinions expressed by Andrew Lyman are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of Stay Thirsty Media, Inc.

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