Rage Against the Machine” guitarist Tom Morello has responded to a video in which supporters of President Donald Trump dance to one of the band’s most popular songs.
“Not exactly what we had in mind,” Morello wrote in a tweet on Friday.
The video, posted on Twitter by user Manny Alicandro, shows several Trump supporters dancing to the band’s song “Killing in the Name” in Philadelphia while the ballots were counted in Pennsylvania.
“Right now in Philadelphia…” Alicandro wrote as subtitles for the video.
Not exactly what we had in mind https://t.co/RydKGCk9RA
– Tom Morello (@tmorello) November 7, 2020
In the video you can hear the refrain of the song with the accompanying lyrics: “Those who have died are justified. For that they wear the badge, they are the chosen whites. They justify those who have died. For that they wear the badge, they are the chosen whites. Those who have died are justified. By wearing the badge, they are the chosen whites. They justify those who have died. For that they wear the badge, they are the chosen whites.”
According to Genius.com, the chorus focuses on the band’s resistance to police brutality, with the singer of Rage Against the Machine, Zack de la Rocha, singing that wearing a police badge is used to justify murder.
After the death of George Floyd in May in police custody in Minneapolis, a Rage Against the Machine fan account on Twitter shared a tweet with a picture of former officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd’s neck for several minutes before he died.
“Killing in name. Taken in 1992. Unfortunately, just as relevant in 2020,” the account holder wrote in the tweet.
In addition to the band’s guitarist, several other Twitter users responded to the video of Trump followers dancing to the song that was the band’s lead single from their self-titled debut album, released November 3, 1992.
“If you miss the whole point of Rage Against the Machine,” wrote Twitter user Hector.
Twitter user Scott Hechinger wrote: “These Trump people are dancing (terribly) to Rage Against the Machine’s “Killing in the Name”. A song about resistance against police brutality, murders, white supremacy & fascism”.
These Trump people dance (terribly) to Rage Against the Machineâs âKilling in the Name.â A song about resistance against police brutality, murders, white supremacy & fascism. âSome of those who work in the armed forces. are the same ones who burn crosses.â https://t.co/8npc0hTyVD
– Scott Hechinger (@ScottHech) November 7, 2020
A similar situation occurred in September, when Trump walked away from Air Force One at a rally in Freeland, Michigan, while “Fortunate Son” was played by the 1960s rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival.
The decision to play the song during a Trump campaign rally raised questions in the social media, as the lyrics of the song protest the Vietnam War and class privilege in America.
In a video posted on Facebook after Trump played the song, Creedence songwriter John Fogerty said: “I find it confusing, I would say, that the president has decided to use my song for his political rallies when in reality it looks like he is probably the lucky son.
Washington Newsday asked Morello for a comment, but did not receive a response in time for publication.