Published Sep 30, 2010Musicians have responded to Arizona's new immigration laws in many ways. Rage Against the Machine's Zack De Le Rocha opted to boycott the state with his Sound Strike campaign, while Stars and Fucked Up publicly debated the issue. As for San Diego noisemakers Crocodiles, they wrote a song called "Kill Joe Arpaio."
The song takes its title from Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the controversial Arizona law enforcer who has taken a strong anti-immigration stance. "Kill Joe Arpaio" is the lead track from Crocodiles' recent free EP, Fires of Comparison. It's an instrumental song featuring dialog clips related to the Arizona immigration laws.
Arpaio apparently learned about the track a few days ago, and on Tuesday (September 28) tweeted, "Msg for the San Diego band 'Alligators' who wrote new song called 'Kill Joe Arpaio': BITE ME." He also told Phoenix's KPHO, "I think it sends a bad message. I understand freedom of speech, but there has to be a line of threatening a law enforcement official."
He also spoke with Fox about the song, saying "If they have something to say about me why not meet me face to face, instead of hiding behind their little record."
This is ironic, of course, since Crocodiles would have never been invited to meet Arpaio face to face had they not made the record. The sheriff added, "You think I listen to this garbage, all this rap and everything, that's what's messing up our country."
In an email to Spin, Crocodiles offered a retort. They wrote, "First off, we're not threatening him... Maybe if the song was called 'I'm Gonna Kill Joe Arpaio,' he'd have a case but what we are attacking is the attitudes and policies he represents. In reality, we're keeping our fingers crossed that his much-deserved heart attack comes soon; the world can always use one less racist. Karma is a bitch, Joe."
We're not sure the words "I'm Gonna" would really make all that much difference in this case, but you can listen to the offending song below.