Yes we’re shocked alright. Michelle Shocked.!
How praytell did she go from this
Michelle Shocked, a controversial singer and born-again Christian, is under fire for her anti-gay tirade during a concert on Sunday night in San Francisco.
Witnesses say she told the crowd at Yoshi’s, “When they stop Prop 8 and force priests at gunpoint to marry gays, it will be the downfall of civilization, and Jesus will come back,” and “You can go on Twitter and say, ‘Michelle Shocked says God hates (anti-gay slur).’ ” The staff at the venue finally turned off the stage lights and pulled the plug on her performance.
The Twittersphere reacted, and so did the promoters of SPACE in Evanston, Ill., where she was set to perform on May 5. They posted this on their official Facebook page:
“Many of you have reached out already following an ugly rant given by Michelle Shocked at her show in San Francisco last night. After speaking with the promoter of that show about the nature of the remarks, it’s clear that this is no longer a show we’re willing to put our name on. The May 5th performance at SPACE has been cancelled and refunds will be issued at point of purchase”
“It was a very painful experience to go through,” patron Matt Penfield told Yahoo! Music. “To be that close to someone who is clearly having a breakdown of some sort is not an emotionally comfortable place to be. I’m still a little bit shaken up. And I don’t like to see people vilified. I still love her music and I’m not going to delete her from my playlist or go smash CDs. But if she has made a conscious decision that she is going to use the stage to espouse beliefs that are hateful and damage groups of people, she probably should not be charging money for a concert. If she wants to sit on a panel at a conference or go to a religious festival, I think in that context she should say whatever she wants. But I do think that doing it as a bait-and-switch at a concert performance is really unfair and not showing respect to people.”
But wait — there’s more!
UPDATE: LGBT activist John Becker has created a petition on Change.org demanding Shocked be held responsible for her hate speech and urging more than a dozen venues to cancel her upcoming shows. So far, nine venues have canceled. Telluride Blues Festival and the Harmony Bar in Wisc. have yet to respond. So far, 1,450 people have signed the petition about the Shocked, who has toured with the all-women’s music festival, Lilith Fair.
“Freedom of speech and artistic expression are critically important, but this isn’t free speech,” says Becker in a statement. “This is hate speech. And in a world where LGBT people are bullied from the pulpit, on the playground, and at the polls, anti-gay hate speech can have serious consequences including legitimizing bullying and hate crimes, and increasing victims’ risk of anxiety, depression, and suicide.”
A few tweets from #shortsharpshocked:
David Roberts @drgrist
Enjoy your vanishingly brief moment of mattering again. RT @MShocked: Truth is leading to painful confrontation #shortsharpshocked
joe cooper @joecoopernyc
Thanks toAlberta Rose Theatre-Portland for standing up against hate speech of Michelle Shocked. #shortsharpshocked
Rain Greene @OriginalRain
@MShocked I hope for you that you find your real self beneath all of that self loathing rage. Cowardice is no way to live #shortsharpshocked
Justin Green @justin_green
@MShocked I’m not a fan, have never listened to you, but re-activated my Twitter to let you know I never will. #shortsharpshocked
Talk about misreading your audience. Gonna be a long time before
#shortsharpshocked rides that bull again. #buhbye
Daryl Lofdahl @dlofdahl10
#shortsharpshocked you should stop calling yourself a punk christian since you clearly dont understand either term.god doesn’t hate anybody.
Jason Chesworth @JasonChesworth
Most surprising part of @MShocked ‘s San Fran rant: discovering that Michelle Shocked isn’t gay. #shortsharpshocked
Good grief — what’s going on here? Why is a “Lilith Fair” folk rocker with a fairly healthy following suddenly going all Westboro Baptist Church all of a sudden? Is she out to beat Lindsay Lohan in the Career Suicide Sweepstakes ?
Shocked was born Karen Michelle Johnston on February 24, 1962, in Dallas, Texas, at the Baylor University Medical Center. Her stepfather was in the US Army and the family moved from base to base. Her mother was Mormon and she was raised in that faith. Her mother had her committed to a psychiatric hospital for a time during her teenage years.] She went through a punk rock phase, wearing a Mohawk hairdo and squatting in abandoned buildings in San Francisco.
“Political” right out of the gate.
In 1984, Shocked adopted the stage name “Michelle Shocked”, often misquoted as “Miss Shell Shocked” or “Me-Shell-Shocked” as in the misquote in Green Left Weekly: “The term ‘Miss Shell Shocked’ is a direct reference to the thousand-yard stare, which was a term that they first used to describe the victims of shell-shock in World War One. These people from outward appearances had survived the war quite well when in fact inside their minds were blown. I first used that name in 1984 at the Democratic Convention in San Francisco where I was arrested for protesting and demonstrating against corporations who contribute money to both the Democratic Party and the Republican Party campaigns.”
MORE “Poilitical” and not right-wing.
Shocked received her first international exposure after Pete Lawrence recorded her performance on a portable tape recorder at the Kerrville Folk Festival in Texas. Without her permission, Lawrence released the tape in Europe as a bootleg album: The Texas Campfire Tapes (1986). The album’s success brought major labels asking her to sign a contract. Shocked was resistant to what she saw as the machinations of the music industry, and worked to retain a degree of creative control.
Her first US success came with the release of her 1988 debut album Short Sharp Shocked on college radio rotations around the country, which was met with strong acclaim from listeners. On the crest of this independent momentum, her 1989 album Captain Swing on Mercury Records was released, followed by her 1992 album Arkansas Traveler.
In 1995, Shocked contributed an original song to the soundtrack for the film Dead Man Walking called “Quality of Mercy.” In 1996, she released a studio version of an underground release Kind-Hearted Woman (black cover) on the short-lived Private Music label.
Starting in 2002 with the release of Deep Natural, Shocked established her own label, Mighty Sound. She reissued expanded versions of her entire catalog, made possible by having retained complete ownership of her work when she signed with Mercury in 1987.
An acoustic version of her song “How You Play the Game” was featured as the opening and credits soundtrack in the DVD of the 2004 documentary film Bush’s Brain.
Shocked continues to make music as an independent artist. In June 2005 she released a trilogy of albums called Threesome (Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, Mexican Standoff and Got No Strings). In May 2007 she released the album ToHeavenURide; in September 2009,Soul of My Soul
And now lt’s gets interesting.
Shocked put forward an ambiguous sexuality from the beginning of her career. Her music appealed to many people including lesbians. In 1989 she joked to a US broadcast television audience that the New Music Album of the Year award she won, beating out Tracy Chapman, Phranc, and the Indigo Girls, should have been called “Best Lesbian Vocalist”.After an Earth Day performance in Chicago in April 1990, she gave an interview to Christie L. Nordhielm of Outlines, a Chicago newspaper for the gay community. Accompanied by journalist Bart Bull, she told Nordhielm she felt boxed in by listener expectations that she was either straight or gay; she said, “I would like a much broader definition for myself.” She explained her wish to be politically and sexually subversive by saying, “I resent like hell that I was maybe 18 years old before I even heard the ‘L’ word. I mean, that’s understood, growing up sheltered in a Mormon environment. But it would have made all the difference for me had I grown up knowing that the reason I didn’t fit in, was because they hadn’t told me there were more categories to fit into.” She said she did not condone the outing activities engaged in by members of ACT UP. Since then, Shocked has been listed as lesbian or bisexual.
DO TELL MICHELLE !
In the mid-1990s, Shocked joined the choir of the West Angeles Church of God in Christ. After attending for a number of years, she was born again. Since her religious conversion, Shocked has made a number of statements against homosexuality, linking this stance to her religious beliefs. In a 2008 interview with the Dallas Voice, a gay newspaper, she said that she would be “honored” to be called an “honorary lesbian” but added:
“There are some inconvenient truths that I’m now a born again, sanctified, saved-in-the-blood Christian. So much of what’s said and done in the name of that Christianity is appalling. According to my Bible, which I didn’t write, homosexuality is immoral. But homosexuality is no more or less a sin than fornication. And I’m a fornicator with a capital F.”
Later statements in live performance have not included references to her own “fornication”. While performing at the Wild Goose Festival in June 2011, a Christian event at which the inclusion of gay Christians was debated, Shocked responded to an audience member’s question about homosexuality by saying “Who drafted me as a gay icon? You are looking at the world’s greatest homophobe. Ask God what He thinks.”
Don’t think we haven’t asked!
On March 17, 2013, Shocked spoke out against gays during a concert at Yoshi’s nightclub in San Francisco, which led to the audience leaving in protest and club management ending the show. Shocked was reported to have told the audience, “You are going to leave here and tell people ‘Michelle Shocked said God hates faggots.” At least eight venues cancelled scheduled performances in response to Shocked’s remarks
More cancellations to follow.
In 1992, Shocked married journalist Bart Bull. They divorced in 2004.
Bartle Bull was famously “linked” as the “Mainstream” says these days to Edie Sedgwick.
Edie’s favorite song was –
Edie famously used to get up on ables in restaurants and sing it a capella
Here’s a far more fitting number for Michelle
Beleagured singer Michelle Shocked said today that her onstage rant against gay marriage has been misinterpreted and that she is not in any way anti-gay.
‘I do not, nor have I ever, said or believed that God hates homosexuals (or anyone else). I said that some of His followers believe that,’ the singer tells CNN in a statement.
On Sunday (17 March), the singer was performing at a jazz club in San Francisco called Yoshi’s when during her encore, she went into a rant against gay marriage saying: ‘I live in fear that the world will be destroyed if gays are allowed to marry.’
She then said to the crowd: ‘You can go on Twitter and say, ‘Michelle Shocked says God hates fags.’”
Shocked says when she encouraged the audience to tweet she was ‘predicting the absurd way my description of, my apology for, the intolerant would no doubt be misinterpreted.’
Her career has already suffered damage. The audience at Yoshi’s walked out on the singer and four venues in California, two in Colorado, and one each in Oregon, Washington, and Illinois all canceled upcoming shows. A Change.org petition encouraging other venues not to employ her.
While Shocked remained mum during the first two days of the controversy, she is now apologizing. She also tells her fans not ‘believe everything you read on Facebook or Twitter.’
‘I’m very sorry,’ she says. ‘I don’t always express myself as clearly as I should. My view of homosexuality has changed not one iota. I judge not. And my statement equating repeal of Prop 8 with the coming of the End Times was neither literal nor ironic: it was a description of how some folks – not me – feel about gay marriage.’
She adds: ‘The show, and the rant, was spontaneous. As for those applauding my so-called stance that ‘God Hates F****ts,’ I say they should be met with mercy, not hate. And I hope that what remains of my audience will meet that intolerance with understanding, even of those who might hate them.’
‘What is being questioned is my support for the LGBT community, and that has never wavered,’ she also says. ‘Music and activism have always been part of my work and my journey, which I hope and intend to continue. I am damn sorry.’
She concludes by saying: ‘If I could repeat the evening, I would make a clearer distinction between a set of beliefs I abhor, and my human sympathy for the folks who hold them. I say this not because I want to look better. I have no wish to hide my faults, and – clearly – I couldn’t if I tried.’
I do not, nor have I ever, said or believed that God hates homosexuals (or anyone else). I said that some of His followers believe that. I believe intolerance comes from fear, and these folks are genuinely scared. When I said “Twitter that Michelle Shocked says “God hates faggots,” I was predicting the absurd way my description of, my apology for, the intolerant would no doubt be misinterpreted. The show was all music, and the audience tweets said they enjoyed it. The commentary came about ten minutes later, in the encore.
And to those fans who are disappointed by what they’ve heard or think I said, I’m very sorry: I don’t always express myself as clearly as I should. But don’t believe everything you read on facebook or twitter. My view of homosexualty has changed not one iota. I judge not. And my statement equating repeal of Prop 8 with the coming of the End Times was neither literal nor ironic: it was a description of how some folks – not me – feel about gay marriage.
The show, and the rant, was spontaneous. As for those applauding my so-called stance that “God Hates Faggots,” I say they should be met with mercy, not hate. And I hope that what remains of my audience will meet that intolerance with understanding, even of those who might hate them.
Folks wonder about my sexuality, but denying being gay is like saying I never beat my husband. My sexuality is not at issue. What is being questioned is my support for the LGBT community, and that has never wavered. Music and activism have always been part of my work and my journey, which I hope and intend to continue. I’d like to say this was a publicity stunt, but I’m really not that clever, and I’m definitely not that cynical.
But I am damn sorry. If I could repeat the evening, I would make a clearer distinction between a set of beliefs I abhor, and my human sympathy for the folks who hold them. I say this not because I want to look better. I have no wish to hide my faults, and – clearly – I couldn’t if I tried.
DID she now?
I believe in a God who loves everyone, and my faith tells me to do my best to also love everyone. Everyone: gay or straight, stridently gay, self-righteously faithful; left or right, far left, far right; good, bad, or indifferent. That’s the law: everyone.
I may disagree with someone’s most fervently held belief, but I will not hate them. And in this controversy, that means speaking for Christians with opinions I in no way share about homosexuality. Will I endorse them? Never. Will I disavow them? Never.
I stand accused of forsaking the LGBT community for a Christianity which is – hear me now – anathema to my understanding of faith. I will no doubt take future flack for saying so. I’m accused of believing that “God hates fags” and that the repeal of Prop 8 will usher in the End Times. Well, if I caused such an absurdity, I am damn sorry. To be clear: I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of any so-called faith preaching intolerance of anyone. Again, anyone: straight or gay, believers or not: that’s the law.
That means upholding my punk rock values in the most evangelical enclaves and, in this case, speaking up for the most fearful of fundamentalists in, well, a San Francisco music hall full of Michelle Shocked fans.
As an artist in this time of unbearable culture wars, I understand: this means trouble, and this is neither the first nor last time trouble has come my way. And that’s fine by me.
I know the fear many in the evangelical community feel about homosexual marriage, as I understand the fear many in the gay community feel toward the self-appointed faithful. I have and will continue speaking to both. Everything else – facebook, twitter, whatever – is commentary.
To quote the opening line of The Wild Bunch, “I know what you meant to do — it’s what you DID that I don’t like!”
And so –