Rockers Light Up Trump Over Wildfire Response
By Andrew Magnotta
November 12, 2018
Several rock musicians are calling bullocks on President Trump's recent statements regarding California's rampant wildfires.
Fires burning all over California this year are the worst on record. It's estimated nearly 7,600 fires have burned over 4,300 square miles of land.
Three fires raging this month have prompted state officials to declare a state of emergency, evacuating more than 250,000 people from their homes.
Early Saturday morning, President Trump blamed the "gross mismanagement" on the part of the state of California for the fires and threatened to withdraw federal funding from the state.
There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly forest fires in California except that forest management is so poor. Billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 10, 2018
But the logic of Trump's proposal — stop not putting out the fires or the government will stop helping put out the fires — didn't sit well with several rock legends and California residents.
Hall of Famer Neil Young, who said this weekend that his home was burnt down, decried Trump's ignorance of the role a lengthy drought has played in creating fuel for the fires. He complained that the president "defies science" and denies Climate Change.
"It's too big for some to see at all," Young wrote, referring to one Southern California blaze. "Firefighters have never seen anything like this in their lives. I have heard that said countless times in the past two days, and I have lost my home before to a California fire, now another."
While many pointed out that Congress, not the State of California, controls the U.S. Bureau of Land Management's budget, Guns N' Roses front man Axl Rose added that if California got the funding it needed to prevent fires, it wouldn't be in its current predicament.
"Only a demented n' truly pathetic individual would twist that around n' use a tragedy to once again misrepresent facts for attempted public/political gain at others' expense," Rose wrote in his latest critique of the Trump's performance.
Um...actually...it’s a lack of federal funding that’s at the “root” of the purported forest mismanagement. Only a demented n’ truly pathetic individual would twist that around n’ use a tragedy to once again misrepresent facts for attempted public/political gain at other’s expense— Axl Rose (@axlrose) November 11, 2018
Rod Stewart questioned why any politician would use a natural disaster to leverage a threat against a people.
"...California needs words of support and encouragement, not threats or finger pointing and accusations," Stewart Tweeted. "Where is Winston Churchill when you need him?"
Mr. President, while people’s homes are burning, while lives are being lost & while firefighters are risking their lives, California needs words of support & encouragement, not threats or finger pointing & accusations. Where is Winston Churchill when you need him?— Sir Rod Stewart (@rodstewart) November 10, 2018
A local fire association invited the president to "Come to SoCal and learn the facts and help the victims." Ex-Skid Row front man Sebastian Bach — who moved to California after losing his New Jersey home to Hurricane Irene in 2011 — was incredulous at Trump's lack of a basic understanding of where California's forests actually are.
"Oh my God," he began. "Thousand Oaks is not in the forest. Agoura Hills is not in the forest. Malibu is not in the forest. The reason for these fires is called #climatechange. It's called #science. And it's only going to get worse because you don't know or care what a forest is."
Oh my God. Thousand Oaks is not in the forest. Agoura Hills is not in the forest. Malibu is not in the forest. the reason for these fires is called #climatechange . It's called #science . And it's only going to get worse because you don't know or care what a forest is https://t.co/jgmttVxpD6— Sebastian Bach (@sebastianbach) November 10, 2018
A few more rockers sought to do what the president didn't in his first Tweet.
Mötley Crüe bassist Nikki Sixx, former Guns N' Roses guitarist DJ Ashba and the official Twitter account for Foghat profusely thanked first responders for working around the clock to fight the worst blazes and wished safety to those displaced.
"Dear Mr. Trump, you love our music — please help California — the state where Journey was born and the whole band lived and wrote our hits," Schon pleaded. "Don't Stop Believin'."
If you support this President, please read this. I know you all respect our First Responders, now gear what they have to say — Trump blames fires, erroneously, on California forest management. Firefighters call it a 'shameful attack' - Los Angeles Times https://t.co/PTFsU6fAKN— benmont tench III (@benchten) November 11, 2018
Photos: Getty Images