In a move that has created quite a stir within the music/art world, Oberlin College’s talent booker/promoter, Ivan Krasnov, has canceled this Saturday’s Viet Cong show at the ‘Sco due to the “problematic and offensive nature of band’s name”.
Mr. Krasnov recognizes the potential of the breakthrough indie band (their debut album is a shoo-in Top 10 album of ’15) whilst giving a heart-felt apology/statement (here) highlighting the misalignment of Viet Cong’s name, the band’s lack of sensitivity to its meaning, and the professed values of Oberlin; an institute steeped in progressive, anti-war history.
The cancelation has garnered a lot of attention, with Andy Gill, guitarist of Gang of Four, weighing in:
People should be treated as grown ups, capable of making their own decisions . We should not be deciding for people what we think they are capable of understanding or not. Artists; film-makers, writers, musicians need to be un-censored so they can make their point, political or otherwise.
Read the rest of the above interview at the Brooklyn Vegan.
Gang of Four is no stranger to name controversy, as their own moniker is a reference to the evil policy implementors of the Cultural Revolution phase during Mao’s Communistic regime in China.
So, Columbus, are you offended by the name?
Is Gang of Four and Viet Cong in the wrong?
[Note: Oberlin is the only canceled date on Viet Cong’s ’15 World Tour]