A 1980s protest versus racism in Texas has been brought back to life – and on to the highways – with help from eco-friendly Day


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There were many chants at the anti-Trump demonstration exterior Downing Street top top Monday night, but one was particularly satisfying. It has actually a bracing staccato energy, favor a weaponised cheerleader chant, and also it has already been heard at protests across the US: “No Trump! No KKK! No fascist USA!” try it. The feels good.

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The chant’s popularity took turn off at the American Music awards last November, 12 days after the us election. Midway with a furious power of their solitary Bang Bang, the politics minded band green Day damaged the track down come a tense dirge and frontman billy Joe Armstrong barked the chant 6 times. “We didn’t rehearse it,” he claimed later. “We’re just as lot in shock as everybody rather is about this.” He additionally clarified the the hymn originated much more than 30 years earlier with the band MDC.

When eco-friendly Day started out in Berkeley’s famously militant Gilman Street punk scene, they were schooled in the canon the hardcore punk. Among the many radical bands they met there was MDC, based in mountain Francisco yet originally indigenous Austin, Texas. In the band’s hometown in 1980, the Ku Klux Klan was harassing Latino farmworkers when trying come recruit new members at punk shows, lot as the national Front go in Britain. The punk scene’s resistance to the Klan influenced the band, then dubbed the Stains, to write a frantic two-minute tirade called Born come Die, v the blurted chant: “No war! No KKK! No fascist USA!” It to be rerecorded because that MDC’s 1982 debut album numerous Dead Cops, a hardcore punk classic.


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All together now … anti-Trump demonstrators outside Downing Street ~ above Monday night. Photograph: Tom Nicholson/Rex/ShutterstockSlowed down and also tightened up, the chant came to be a fixture in ~ protests because that years come come. Frontman Dave Dictor claimed that the heard it throughout demonstrations versus the Gulf war in 1991 and also again 12 year later. A certain retort come Texan Klansmen in 1980 had proved incredibly flexible. When eco-friendly Day updated that to surname Trump (as MDC themselves execute on tour), the millions the town hall the AMAs didn’t require to understand their punk history to appreciate the message. ~ above 10 January, protesters shouted that while disrupting the check hearings for proposed attorney basic Jeff Sessions, a man with a history of opposing civil rights.

It is rarely for a chant come eclipse the tune that originally consisted of it, although the happened most famously through the Plastic Ono Band’s give Peace a Chance. When the tape-recorded version is ramshackle and plodding, the chorus came to be ubiquitous together a refrain at demonstrations.

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Even after the environment-friendly Day performance, Born to die isn’t among MDC’s most popular tracks ~ above Spotify yet the singing is unquestionably their most renowned lyric. Asked by Rolling stone why that resonated so strong after for this reason long, Dictor can not say: “I think it’s simply a great line that records what us want,” the replied. Periodically one great line deserve to be a band’s most potent legacy.