Our friends Texas In July are a Christian metalcore band and they’re on tour with us on the Take Action Tour. This year’s sponsor is Sex Etc., an organization promoting safe sex, education and awareness of what is really going on.

“Fans” of Texas In July are beginning to protest the band and making hate groups because they are saying, and i quote, “Texas In July is now a synonym for abortion!”

This is completely absurd. First of all, these people are boycotting the band UNTIL THE END OF THIS TOUR then going back to liking them again. That’s also like me saying, “I’m straight edge, but I’ll drink in Europe… because it’s Europe, you know?” If you’re going to be dumb and make outrageous statements, at least follow through with it completely.

So this is where we come in. We love Texas In July and all of the great people in the band. They have been really bummed out with this weird backlash and we’ve been reassuring them that it doesn’t matter. If people are going to bail on them for doing something that is benefitting others, then they shouldn’t be fans in the first place.

My take on Sex Etc., Planned Parenthood and other organizations: they are looking at things realistically saying that people are ALREADY having sex so why not at least help those people make it safer? Using condoms helps prevent unwanted pregnancy and transference of STDs which are still VERY prevalent despite popular belief. Birth Control helps to prevent pregnancy but also helps women/girls who have problems with their periods which could be very painful. They also help with the plethora of people without insurance giving them affordable birth control. A lot of people are trying to pull funding from Planned Parenthood like they did to NPR for the same reasons, and that means this tour is more important now than ever.

On this tour all of the bands got tested for HIV by Planned Parenthood to show people that it’s simple and easy to get tested. We handed out condoms to people in line and let them know if their lifestyle choice is to have sex with their girlfriend/boyfriend, or another partner, they should at least be safe with it. Shows like Teen Mom were made to show that life is a lot harder than you think with a kid at age 14. That show needs to happen because kids are sexually active at a younger and younger age each year. You can’t stop everyone from drinking or doing drugs, but you can at least give people guidelines that can help them out and potentially save their lives. The same goes with sex. 

So please, leave our friends Texas In July alone. They’re great guys with great morals. Being on this tour they’re choosing to help educate people, they’re not saying, “WE ARE PRO ABORTION!” There is no such thing as “PRO ABORTION”, believe me, people don’t LOVE it. Planned parenthood does a lot more than you think, as well as Sex Etc. and they’re trying to help as many people as they can. There isn’t an abortion booth on this tour, there’s only education and awareness. I also don’t have a vagina, so why would I have a say in a woman getting an abortion? None of us do. We just want people to have the right to choose because I think that is the idea our country is founded upon.

“Abstinence is the only real true safe sex.. but we’re here to promote SAFER sex for everyone else.” is what a fine gentleman at Planned Parenthood taught me.

Regardless of your religious or political beliefs, don’t belittle a band just trying to get exposure by choosing to be on a tour like this. If anything, they have real guts to be doing this when so many of their peers wouldn’t. We all want to help people and that’s it.

After all, the tour is called “TAKE ACTION” and not “SIT AND COMPLAIN.”

(Reprinted with permission from jonathandiener.tumblr.com/. Diener is drummer for the Swellers. Pre-order their upcoming album, Good For Me, here.)