Good day all,
I was perusing the major news websites today, as I do everyday and here are some of the top headlines I would like to share with you: CNN- “Ex-Scientologist: Cruise Split Harmful”, FOX News- “Twilight fan dies at Comic-Con in traffic accident”, MSNBC- “Racoons attack Washington state jogger”. interesting huh? You know what I did not see on any of these websites even when I searched and clicked as far as I could? A headline that read something similar to “American musician still being held by Prague authorities after posting bail and yet to be charged for a crime” At this point the Randy Blythe saga has become ridiculous and as I have tweeted and stated previously it is time for the US government to get involved. Not only that but where is the media in this, why haven’t CNN, FOX, MSNBC, The Huffington Post, The Drudge Report, The New York Times, The Washington Post, any of the media taken this story and reported on it? Why is Mr. Blythe being ignored? Because he is in a heavy metal band? Who cares? He is an American citizen who is being held by a foreign government after he upheld the stipulations they applied to him. The US State Department should be all over this and supplying support in any way possible for Mr. Blythe to be removed from prison and given the support of his home country.
If Mr. Blythe were a cute US college student accused of murder (see Amanda Knox), not only would the US government have intervened but the news media would have made this front page news over anything else that was happening around the world and in the United States. Had Mr. Blythe been a backpacker/hiker who accidentally crossed the Iranian border and was detained (see Shourd, Bauer, and Fattal), or a journalist in South Korea (see Laura Ling), Al Gore would be flying his personal jet to the ends of the Earth to secure their freedom, but unfortunately for Mr. Blythe he is just a lowly heavy metal musician who decided to take part in a tour in a foreign country where there was no fore-warning that he may be wanted for a crime. There wasn’t a phone call to the United States from Prague saying “hey, one of your citizens is being accused of a crime here in Prague and we would like the US to facilitate his appearance here in our courts”, no instead they ambushed him with speculative, at best, evidence and have him in a prison against his will after posting a bail that the courts set. He may not be technically considered a “political prisoner” but he sure as hell is being held as one.
This saga has dragged on for to long and the United States government and news media are turning a blind eye to this travesty. The fine work of the Gauntlet has been the only real source for information concerning Mr. Blythe and his detention, and that is just wrong. Where is the public outcry from the citizens of the United States? I know that there have been some online campaigns and Twitter accounts and trends for Mr. Blythe’s plight but more needs to be done. If you care about this injustice you should be emailing, tweeting, calling your government representatives, the US Department of State and anyone else you can think of to help bring this situation to light and get some help for Mr. Blythe.
I don’t usually get that involved in this type of thing but the lack of attention by the US government and media is just astounding to me and I think at this point something has to be done and we as the heavy metal community are going to have to do it. Be smart about bringing attention to this story, use email ,social media, telephones but be smart so that you may be taken seriously by the person you are trying to take notice. After seeing the evidence that has circulated there is no doubt in my mind that Mr. Blythe is being held unfairly and that something needs to be done. I am not saying he is completely innocent, just that he has complied with the stipulations the court has given him yet he still remains imprisoned. I can’t say this enough, IT IS TIME FOR THE US GOVERNMENT TO ACT, and the US MEDIA TO FOLLOW SUIT!
The Gauntlet has provided the contact information for the US Embassy in Prague here: http://www.thegauntlet.com/article/525/25734/U.S.-Embassy-In-Prague-Comments-On-Randy-Blythe Use it as you see fit!
Until later, Peace,