Legendary Descendents slam former Oath Keeper for rocking band’s shirt at Jan. 6 committee hearing

Legendary Descendents slam former Oath Keeper for rocking band’s shirt at Jan. 6 committee hearing

On Tuesday, former high-ranking Oath Keeper Jason Van Tatenhove testified during the latest Jan. 6 committee hearing. Van Tatenhove left the alleged domestic terrorist organization in 2016, saying that while he had found its anti-government leanings appealing at first, he then watched the members become far too right-wing for his comfort, saying that the “straw that broke the camel’s back” was when he ran into a couple of Oath Keepers having a casual Holocaust denial conversation.

One of the first things that people online noticed during Van Tatenhove’s testimony was his sartorial style. Under a jean jacket, Tatenhove was wearing a T-shirt featuring the legendary west coast punk band Descendents. Descendents are best known as a pioneer in pop punk music, and have always used a character named “Milo” (a caricature drawing of lead singer Milo Aukerman) in their designs. The shirt Van Tatenhove wore included the cover art for Descendents’ 1996 album Everything Sucks.

Descendents fans quickly jumped on how surreal this made Van Tatenhove’s testimony. Comedian Chris Gethard tweeted, “Am I hallucinating that this Oath Keeper testifying before congress is wearing a Descendents t-shirt? I just had hernia surgery so this may be the painkillers.” Many made jokes that played on the band’s first 1982 album, Milo Goes to College. Then the band itself released a statement.

RELATED STORY: The ‘straw that broke the camel’s back’: Former Oath Keeper testifies

First up, the band itself.

We completely disavow groups like the Oath Keepers and in no way condone their hateful ideology.

— DESCENDENTS (@descendents) July 12, 2022

That’s more full-throated a response than the entire Republican Party has been able to give over the past decade. The responses from around Twitter were a bright spot during another day’s worth of dismaying testimony.

Bold move wearing a @descendents Everything Sucks shirt to the January 6th hearing pic.twitter.com/FdSx54Vi3e

— Skatt (@kirbypuckett) July 12, 2022

Fans wanted to make sure people understood the irony involved when the right wing of the country embraces countercultural movements like punk music.

When you don’t understand the lyrics#descendents #jasonvantatenhove pic.twitter.com/qHpjrrjHJ1

— Riot Style®️ (@RiotStyle) July 12, 2022

Drummer Damon Kruklowski jumped in with a solid joke.

Jamie Raskin promoted a Mission of Burma show on Harvard campus my freshman year, 1981. It’s possible these are the only two in the room who know the Descendants pic.twitter.com/1ER33ZUz12

— Damon K (@dada_drummer) July 12, 2022

Requisite play on album title:

New Descendents album “Milo goes before the select committee” pic.twitter.com/If6XlyNYci

— Jason Selvig (@jasonselvig) July 12, 2022

Bingo!

Well… I certainly didn’t have Descendents needing to carlify that they aren’t a Nazi band on my 2022 bingo card

— Barco Moogers (@MileEndYob) July 13, 2022

And finally:

Absolutely fuck this guy for having the audacity to wear a Descendents shirt. They do not stand for what he stands for. Dude needs to give another listen to their song ‘Merican. #Jan6thHearings #Jan6thCommitteeHearings pic.twitter.com/TXzeJTV7jR

— HornlessUnicorn (@HornlessUnicor4) July 12, 2022

Here are the lyrics to the Descendents’ song, Merican:

We flipped our finger to the king of England
Stole our country from the indians
With God on our side and guns in our hands
We took it for our own
A nation dedicated to liberty
Justice and equality
Does it look that way to you?
It doesn’t look that way to me
The sickest joke I know
Listen up man, I’ll tell you who I am
Just another stupid american
You don’t wanna listen
You don’t wanna understand
So finish up your drink and go home
I come from the land of Ben Franklin
Twain and Poe and Walt Whitman
Otis Redding, Ellington,
The country that I love
But it’s a land of the slaves and the ku klux klan
Haymarket riot and the great depression
Joe McCarthy, Vietnam
The sickest joke I know
Listen up man, I’ll tell you who I am
Just another stupid american
You don’t wanna listen
You don’t wanna understand
So finish up your drink and go home
I’m proud and ashamed
Every fourth of july
You got to know the truth
Before you say that you got pride
Now the cops got tanks ’cause the kids got guns
Shrinks pushin’ pills on everyone
Cancer from the ocean, cancer from the sun
Straight to Hell we go
Listen up man, I’ll tell you who I am
Just another stupid american
You don’t wanna listen
You don’t wanna understand
So finish up your drink and go home
Listen up man, I’ll tell you who I am
Just another stupid american
You don’t wanna listen
You don’t wanna understand
So finish up your drink and go home
Finish up your drink and go home

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