BENEDICT ARNOLD & THE TRAITORS
KILL THE HOSTAGES 7" REISSUE (Artifix Records)
This little gem caused quite a stir back when it originally came out in 1980. Why, you ask?
Well, at the time, a number of students took over the American embassy in Iran and held fifty-two
people hostage for 444 days. It was a really big deal, not unlike September 11, 2001 would be today,
and some would argue that then-President Carter's handling of the crisis lost him the 1980 election to
Ronald "Punk Rockers Love Me" Reagan. That said, a song proclaiming that we "Kill the Hostages"
would be like a band singing "Fuck the World Trade Center" today. To understand why a band would
say such a thing, one would need look back at much of what punk was founded on philosophically.
Like the Yippie Party of the 1960s (an organization that counted both über-prankster Abbie Hoffman
and Stephen Stink, lead singer of the band currently under discussion), one of the basic tenets of punk
was to challenge, upset and/ or destroy the status quo on every level, be it through silly haircuts and funny
clothes (mohawks, safety pins, and bondage gear), promoting unpopular political thought (e.g. Sidney's
swastika shirt, the Clash's embracing the Sandinistas, Crass and their circle-As),
|The entire contents of this site are © Copyright 2004 Benedict Arnold & The Traitors,
except the "Star Spangled Bummer" cover art,
© Copyright 2004 Jaime "Germs" Zacarias.