Five Finger Death Punch singer Ivan Moody (real name Ivan Greening) has faced a barrage of criticism from local media and authorities after video emerged showing him encouraging a nine-year-old girl to chant “burn, motherfucker, burn” on stage in Florida.
A video of the incident, taken during a performance of the song Burn MF at Fork Rock Festival on 26th April, shows the young Olivia Douglas on stage with the band as Moody performs around her. Douglas does not swear herself, but Moody can be seen hugging her and saying “Come on, gorgeous, you know the words”.
The video was uploaded to YouTube by Olivia’s father Mark Douglas, who has down-played claims that Moody did anything inappropriate.
Florida’s Wink News have quoted a number of sources who have criticised Moody’s actions. Lawyer Miguel Fernandez told the news channel, “This is a form of abuse… This child is being used as a prop. I feel sorry for this child. This child is helpless in that position. What does this child do? She’s frozen.”
Local police sheriff Mike Scott said, “Words can’t describe my disgust – this should never, ever be allowed in a county park.”
But Olivia’s father has insisted that swearing isn’t such a big thing. “It’s a bad word, yeah. It’s a word. That’s all it is. Everyone cusses,” he said. “[Olivia] goes to a church every Thursday and takes piano lessons. She’s a normal kid – just loves metal.”
“They’re going to hear it at school. They’re going to see it on TV, movies… It’s everywhere,” Douglas continued. “You’re not going to get rid of violence…ever. You’re not going to get rid of cussing, swearing.”
Five Finger Death Punch are yet to comment publicly on the incident. Moody was arrested earlier this year over an alleged in-flight assault, which took place during the Soundwave 2014 tour.
Watch: WINK News Report on Five Finger Death Punch at Fort Rock
Watch: Olivia with Five Finger Death Punch (Fort Rock, Fort Myers FL. 26/04/14)
Photos: Five Finger Death Punch, Avenged Sevenfold – Big Top, Sydney 25/02/14