An Exodus fan in Greenville, Kentucky was arrested for “terroristic threats” after posting the lyrics to the band’s song “Class Dismissed (A Hate Primer)”.
31-year-old James Evans posted the following on Facebook on August 24: “Student bodies lying dead in the halls, a blood splattered treatise of hate. Class dismissed is my hypothesis, gun fire ends in debate.”
According to 14News.com, multiple agencies received calls concerned about the post, resulting in Evans’ arrest.
The warrant said Evans was arrested because, “he threatened to kill students and or staff at school.”
Exodus’ management has released a statement explaining that “the band does not promote or condone terrorists, threats or bullying. That being said, the band is somewhat baffled by the fact that this man being charged for what seems against his first amendment rights of Freedom Of Speech.”
Said Exodus guitarist Gary Holt: “The idea that an individual in this great country of ours could be arrested for simply posting lyrics to a song is something I never believed could happen in a free society. James Evans was simply posting lyrics to a band he likes on Facebook, and he was locked up for it. The song ‘Class Dismissed (A Hate Primer)’ [from the 2010 album ‘Exhibit B: The Human Condition’] was written as a view through the eyes of a madman and in no way endorses that kind of fucked up behavior. It was the Virginia Tech massacre perpetrated by Seung-Hui Cho that was the subject and inspiration to write the song, one in which we put the brakes on playing it live after the Sandy Hook shooting, as we did not want to seem insensitive. As some of us in Exodus are parents, of course these things hit close to home; it’s every parent’s worst fear. These moments are the stuff of nightmares, and life, as well as music, isn’t always pretty. But when we start to overreact to things like lyrics by any band, including EXODUS, and start arresting people, we are caving in to paranoia and are well on our way to becoming an Orwellian society.”
Evans was released from jail Wednesday afternoon (September 3) after spending eight days behind bars. His case will be deferred for six months and he will have to undergo a mental evaluation.