Footage has emerged of The Amity Affliction frontman Joel Birch criticising a 17-year-old fan who wore a Donald Trump-branded jersey to the band’s recent concert in Las Vegas.
The incident took place at the Australian metalcore group’s show at Brooklyn Bowl on Saturday, 5th January, and saw Birch take issue with the fan’s decision to wear the shirt to the band’s performance.
“If you want to wear that shit, and you want to walk around and make other people uncomfortable because you hold a certain set of beliefs about other human beings, please leave that shit at the fucking door, or go home,” he told the crowd in the video you can see below.
Since the incident, Birch has taken to Twitter to defend his comments, telling fans that he “will not stand for people jeopardizing the happiness of others, and ruining their experience at one of our shows”.
“What I said tonight was much more balanced than I could have been, and wanted to be,” he said in a series of now-deleted tweets.
“Wearing a jersey that you KNOW will be divisive is exactly the opposite of what I stand for as a person. I do not respect your ‘beliefs.’ I do not feel like you have the right to make others uncomfortable by wearing a jersey that may as well be branded with a swastika.
“I will not remain silent if you come to our shows dressed like that. You can believe whatever you want to believe while you are outside the venue, but don’t you DARE bring your negative energy inside to intimidate and cause discomfort to others.
“I wish you didn’t like our band. I wish you hadn’t come to the show. I wish you could see the hurt you inflict on those around you from ethnic backgrounds, people of colour, Latinos, Hispanics, cholos and open-minded people who do not espouse your racist garbage.”
17-year-old Utah resident Degan Palmer, who was wearing the Trump jersey at The Amity Affliction’s Las Vegas show, told Music Feeds the incident left him feeling “annoyed”.
“It showed how one of my idols is so immature and childish that he would call out a paying and supportive fan, who has done nothing inappropriate, and tell him that he isn’t welcome to see his shows,” he said.
“I was put in an awkward situation because I didn’t know what to do, because he basically put a target on my back for all the drunk anti-Trump people.”
Palmer said “a few big guys” in the crowd defended him following the incident, and he still “enjoyed” the concert, despite Birch’s comments.
“For [Birch] to call me out on Twitter was very amusing to me,” he said.
“He can have his own opinions on politics and I don’t care, but the fact that he is giving me crap for supporting Trump when he isn’t even a US citizen was very funny to me and many others.”
See video of the incident alongside Joel Birch’s tweets, below.
The Amity Affliction are currently touring with new drummer Joe Longobardi in support of their latest album Misery, and will return to Australia to perform at Download Festival in March.
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@theamityaffliction frontman Joel Birch has defended his comments after criticising a fan for wearing a Donald Trump shirt to the band’s recent Las Vegas show. . The 17-year-old fan has told Music Feeds he believes Birch was “immature and childish”. . Read the full story at the link in our bio. . (Video: Degan Palmer / Supplied) #theamityaffliction #joelbirch #lasvegas #donaldtrump #trump
This is the guy. As you can see, a level headed speech followed by a level headed tweet lands me being called a loser, asshole, and libtard. This is why you’re not worth time. I won’t even bother blocking you, as you’re so determined to argue that you make new accounts. https://t.co/3GT25BksSd
— Joel Birch (@JoelDTD) January 6, 2019