During a conversation with Damnation Vault, Pantera vocalist Phil Anselmo talked about the current state of the US, branding it a “crazy time.”
The musician said:
“It is a politically crazy time and everybody, depending on where you lay, wherever you sit on the ‘overton window.’
“Everybody’s screaming and standing and mad. Everybody wants it their way. I think over the next few years, we’re going to see some changes, both good and bad.
“We are American. We can roll with some punches. But, don’t f*c* with our freedom. Especially something as freedom of speech. I see that getting argued; it’s, like, ‘Give me a break, man.’
“Even the people that are bitching and moaning about ‘no free speech’ – they wouldn’t even have the option to voice that opinion for their dream to come true.
“I can understand with the fighting and the violence and stuff like that, I understand that very well… But hate speech and all, I don’t believe in any of that sh*t.”
People are so sensitive now… More people just need to be open-minded… If everybody would just smoke pot all at once, I guarantee you we would all have world peace for that moment in time. [Laughs]
“Actually, my step-father used to say, ‘If we could get all of the world leaders together and everybody dropped a half-hit of acid, we’d be a whole lot better off!’ [Laughs]
“I’ll stick with what you said about the weed. And I agree 100%, man. And, the older I’ve gotten – God, I’m old – I would just say, ‘Put love first. Put love first, man. Open your brain up.’
“And I think that when we do – and it’s tough for young people to hear that because it does sound like a bunch of hippie-hippie-bullsh*t – but if you do put love first, normally, in my experience, you get love back.
“It’s the calmer thing, what you put out there, you get back. I do believe in that to a certain degree. Now, don’t get me wrong, things do fall out of the sky and blindside you, but that’s life, and that’s going to happen.
“As far as other people, like, different sides of the political lines, I think over the last bunch of years, we’ve seen people lose friendships, and marriages fall apart, just over politics.
“Really, it’s, like – hey man, we are all American and we should be just, as far as an identity, what choice do we have, but to say, ‘Hey, we are Americans. We are Americans. And as long as we’re here, if we lock arms and work together, things will get better.’
“Hey man, I’m for peace, love, understanding and a bowl of w*ed like you were talking about, I’m all for it.”
[Laughs] It opens the mind! It makes everything make sense… Gives you another type of freedom.
“It slows things down enough for you to be able to stop and enjoy and live in the now. That’s the thing that you’ve got to learn how to do!
“Some people be blessed and have that gift of living in the now, but hey, I’m guilty as anyone for sitting around in a beautiful, beautiful safety of my own house and with beautiful weather outside with nothing but love and beautiful things around me, but I’m sitting there worried about some tiny f*c*ing thing that I cannot control right at that very second.
“Yeah, I’ve been totally guilty of that. So, when my mind drifts these days to some pointless little squabble that my brain [laughs], I actually just say, ‘Stop!’, and just f*c*ing stop and step outside, take a deep breath, walk the dogs, do something productive, and you know, enjoy it, man.”