Another Campaign Against Metalheads In Jordan?
Author: Amir Kourosh - 2013-03-15
Yesterday, JorZine Team woke up with some bad news: it seems that a new witch hunt campaign against Metalheads is starting (again) in Jordan. As a website focused on Middle Eastern Metal, we all agreed that this is an important issue to report, specially because the website was founded in Jordan and some of our staff members come from that country. We don't want to come back to the old days when metalheads had to deal everyday with this, so we think that our duty is to shed some light over this.
The reasons behind this new witch hunt campaign are confusing and we have heard different versions from many people, but as far as we know, everything started when some unknown students from A'al Al-Bait University tore a copy of the Holy Quran. When other students from the University knew about this, they beaten some metalhead students (because of the longtime misunderstanding that metalheads are devil worshippers), so they needed to be taken to the hospital. As far as we know, the guys accused of ripping the copy of the Quran are currently in prison.
Apart from the fact that it's completely unacceptable to attack the Quran (thus the faith of millions of people) and to beat up people because of their stupid acts... why is this featured on a Metal webzine, if this isn't related with music at all? This is featured in JorZine because it seems that the guys who supposedly attacked the Sacred Book were metalheads. And everyone knows that when a metalhead does something wrong, society judges all the Metal community, not only who has done that wrong act.
Despite the fact that, as far as we know, the guys who tore the Holy Quran didn't have any ties with JorZine or with any Metal band, many people from the Jordanian Metal community are removing their pics from social networks and deactivating their Facebook profiles. So, if they didn't participate in the attack to the Quran and they don't have any ties with the authors... why are they so afraid? Sadly, we all know that these witch hunt campaigns are not just a game. In the past, Jordanian metalheads have faced harassment from authorities and some of them have been even arrested, being accused of devil worshipping without any evi
Outside the country we find other more extreme examples. One year ago, a similar witch hunt campaign started in Iraq. As we reported those days, everything started after a news article was posted at the Iraqi Ministry of Internal Affairs website, which stated that the Ministry started a campaign to finish the EMO/Satanic phenomena due to its "dangerous effects on Iraqi society". A few days later, media reported that more than ONE HUNDRED youngsters were killed. In that days, everyone who dressed in a different way or listened to a different kind of music as the rest of people were labeled as EMOs, so they could be beaten up or even killed. Despite the fact that the country's authorities denied such thing, several pictures of the victims appeared all over the net.
In other countries of the region, things have not became as violent as in Iraq, but it doesn't mean that there hasn't been campaigns against metalheads. We find the most recent episode in Lebanon, where a couple of months ago it started another campaign against Metal music. The campaign was started by a TV show, which was throwing the typical lies about Metal music fans: that all of them take drugs and worship the devil. This was not the first time Lebanese metalheads were in the eye of the storm, but luckily, they remained united and showed everyone that they are normal people who just like to listen to Metal music. During that days, most Lebanese Metal musicians posted statements about this in stead of hiding or insulting all those who attacked them.
And following the example of our Lebanese metal brothers, we want to do the same. It would have been way easier for us to remain silent until things calm down, but we think that this is our duty, so we will not remain silent while Metal music fans fear threats or aggressions from other people. And that's why we claim that Metal music is not a synonym of satanism. Our metal community is formed by normal people who have their normal lifes. The only think that makes different us from the rest of the people is the kind of music we listen to. And if a metalhead does something wrong, he/she is the only one who has to face the consequences of his acts, not the whole metal community.
For all those who are not familiar with Metal music and its fans, we encourage them to listen to them before judging. In stead of listening to sensationalist media... why not ask metalheads itselves? Let's create a honest dialogue with the rest of society, to make them know all the misconceptions they have about us.