Dan Campbell of The Wonder Years wrote a line in the song “Hoodie Weather” that says, “Growing up means watching my heroes turn human in front of me”.
Never did that line ring truer for me than this past weekend when I heard about Jesse Lacey’s complete and utter abuse of his influence.
It’s one thing to make a mistake as large as soliciting sexual activity from a minor, but it’s another thing to make that mistake and not own up to it publicly. As a person who has completely changed the face of alternative music, Jesse should have taken the initiative to speak clearly about his past in his recent statement.
Keeping up appearances is no longer an excuse these days. Jesse Lacey changed people’s lives when he committed acts of both misconduct and, quite frankly, pedophilia. As a female who has experienced only the lowest forms of sexual harassment, I can only imagine what these women are going through as they re-hash emotions and pain that Lacey has caused.
Lacey’s statement on the matter only turns me away from him even more. He focused only on his part of the story, seemingly vying for pity from readers. He made little mention of anything that could be taken as concrete evidence and convict him further.
So, where do we go from here? As both fans and musicians, I think the biggest thing we can do is give complete and utter support to the victims of these emotional and physical attacks. As difficult as it can be to let go of artists whose music has helped us through the darkest times in our lives, we need to be cognizant of how those same artists have been the cause of dark times in others’ lives.
Just yesterday, the band Knuckle Puck had the band With Confidence removed from their upcoming tour. The guitarist for With Confidence, Luke Rockets, has been accused of being sexually involved with a minor and has been released from the band. Later in the day, Kyle Pavone of We Came as Romans was accused of physically assaulting a woman at a music festival.
This is just the beginning. As we begin to realize the frequency and severity of these types of happenings in the entertainment world and beyond, it’s time to stand up for the victims and demand change.
Unfortunately, single voices are rarely a catalyst for change. It’s time we unite our voices against this type of behavior. I charge those in the scene who have large, influential voices to stand up to these people who seem to think that, because their names are in the largest font on a tour poster, they are exempt from taking responsibility for the mistakes they make and the lives they affect.
People may make mistakes. But for Jesse Lacey and other band members in his same situation, it’s time to face the music. It’s time to take responsibility and be proactive in taking care of the problem. It’s time for this lack of self-control to end and simple human decency to take precedent in our music scene.
by Nadia Paiva
Nadia Paiva has been a music enthusiast since she can remember. Going to shows is her main pastime. The other is being upset when she can’t go to shows. This is her first official venture into writing about music. You can follow her on Twitter.