In the past week or so, Slayer's camp has been plagued with controversy, which started when a photoshopped photo of the band with Donald Trump showed up on their Instagram account.
The post, which went up on Inauguration Day, was taken down. But then it was put back up on Jan. 24—this time frontman Tom Araya came forward as the member responsible for the picture.
In the caption, Araya says he was surprised by all the “snowflakes commenting their distaste for the new president.”
That picture now has almost three thousand comments, some of which are Araya posting replies to commenters. In one reply, Araya says his actions don't mean that he supports Trump. In another, Araya involves Vice President Mike Pence's alleged support of electroshock therapy when it comes to homosexuality. Araya makes the comment that “Mike Pence turning fruits into vegetables” along with several laughing emojis.
The entire band then broke their silence to Rolling Stone, where they issued a statement claiming: “Slayer has never endorsed any political party or any candidate.”
“As was verified by Tom, this was his post, is not something the band would have posted if asked, and does not belong on a Slayer social page,” the band says. “We all have our personal opinions, some of which we have voiced in the past, but Slayer has never endorsed any political party or any candidate, and the band intends to keep it that way.”
The Instagram post is still live at the time this article was published.
Guitarist Kerry King, who has in the past voiced support for Hillary Clinton, has now offered his own comments on this situation, through his wife's Instagram, (via Metal Injection).
“Ahhh, the election.., this one has definitely been the most divisive and polarizing event I have ever experienced. My thoughts on the last few days are simple. To me, social media has more benefits than detriments. There is a gigantic upside to band social media, but band social media is just that. Not for everyone's personal tastes. And by that, I mean that I'd rather talk face-to-face with you so that there is no misunderstanding about what either of us are saying. That's why I don't post on personal OR band social media. With social media, there's too much room for misinterpretation, and we all just had a giant taste of that.
Joke or not, my opinion is that our war of words should be with people who don't believe what Slayer is about. NOT with our own fan base.
Make no mistake; this is NOT a Kerry vs. Tom thing. Tom is my bro-PERIOD. Difference of opinion about the photo? Absolutely. End of the world? Not hardly. I LOVE the relationship that Slayer has with our fan base. Best in the world by far! Let's just concentrate on Slaying our COLLECTIVE enemies.”
Read our original story, which has more detail, here.