DEE SNIDER Remains Defiant: 'You're Not Canceling Me' And 'You're Not Shutting Me Up'
June 8, 2023
During a new appearance on "The Chuck Shute Podcast", Dee Snider discussed the cancelation of his planned performance at San Francisco Pride because the TWISTED SISTER singer voiced his support for Paul Stanley's controversial comments criticizing gender-affirming healthcare for children.
San Francisco Pride, which is scheduled to take place June 24-25, was about to announce TWISTED SISTER's 1980s classic "We're Not Gonna Take It" as the official anthem of its 2023 celebration and Snider had been set to perform. However, those plans quickly came to an end after Snider shared his support for Stanley's views that "normalizing" sex reassignment for children is a "sad and dangerous fad."
Speaking to "The Chuck Shute Podcast", Dee said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Being that it's Pride Month, I'm not gonna open that gaping wound so much. People are just looking for me to say more. And I said it all.
"They tried to cancel me because I didn't see one hundred percent eye-to-eye with the community that wanted me to be the grand marshal of their parade, with the community that I've stood with and fought for for decades," he continued.
"As a parent, I disagreed with children's ability to make cognizant decisions at the age of five, six and seven. I have four children, and I soon will have — any minute, by the way — my fifth grandchild, and in my learned opinion, they are not capable. And they were, like, 'canceled' — not just the show, but they went after me and called me transphobic.
"I'm a hell of a writer," Snider added. "You've read my book. You know my speech in Washington. I broke out the pen, which is mightier than the sword, and I posted it on Facebook… You can go [to my Facebook page] and see what I said, although it was pretty covered in the media. And whereas Paul Stanley apologized, I'm not apologizing. Not when I did nothing wrong. I'm the first to apologize when I screw up. And I just laid it out. And [there were] a couple of peeps here and there, 'Dee's whining.'
"You're not canceling me. You're not shutting me up. And the big point was that community — the LGBTQIA+ community, and whatever letters we're adding — they need the support of not just the people who agree with them one hundred percent, they need the support of the middle, and that's where most of us are. [They need] the people of the middle to accept them and recognize their rights and who they are. But that does not mean we have to — I use the word 'fealty' — fealty and bow down to every little thing they say. Who agrees with every single detail of what anybody says? So I just pushed back on it. Everybody backed off. They were shocked. 'Cause most people just apologize or curl up in a fetal position.
"I wasn't kidding when I wrote 'We're Not Gonna Take It'… You're gonna go after the guy who wrote 'We're Not Gonna Take It'?" Snider said. "And they were gonna use my song, too, as their battle cry. Why? Because it's that defiant. And I have lived by my words. There's nothing that's changed with me. I'm not saying I haven't grown and improved — my wife says, 'You're always trying to be better'; I am, and I'm a better man — but my basic belief system has never changed, and I still stand and believe in everything I've always stood [for] and believed [in]. So don't come after me. I'm the worst person to come after, 'cause I'll come back after you."
When San Francisco Pride announced the cancelation of Snider's performance, it said in a statement, "Ultimately SF Pride and Dee have mutually agreed to part ways," and added that Stanley's tweet was "transphobic." It also said that the organization was "heartbroken and angry."
On May 5, Snider released the following statement via social media: "So, I hear I'm transphobic. Really?
"Why did the San Francisco Gay Pride Parade invite me, Dee Snider to be a Grand Marshal in their parade and sing 'We're Not Gonna Take It' on the center stage at what could possibly be the most important LGBTQIA+ gathering in the organization's long history. To quote Joe Garofoli, San Francisco Chronicle's senior political writer, '... Dee Snider [is] a longtime supporter of LGBTQ rights...'
"I have ALWAYS stood with the community and its important causes. I was honored to accept the San Francisco Gay Pride Parade's invitation and I even gave my blessing for 'We're Not Gonna Take It' to be used as this year's battle cry ['Queer Not Gonna Take It!')."
"Is that transphobic?
"I was not aware the Transgender community expects fealty and total agreement with all their beliefs and any variation or deviation is considered 'transphobic.'
"So, my lifetime of supporting the Transgender community's right to identify as they want and honoring whatever changes they may make in how they present themselves to the world isn't enough? Why not?
"I've recently stated I do not believe young children are ready to decide their gender allocation. I believe their choices should be supported and accepted by their parents, but I do not think kids have the mental capabilities to make rational, logical decisions on things of a magnitude that will affect them for the rest of their lives. I do not believe they are mentally developed enough."
"Dr. Jennifer Katzenstein [director of psychology, neuropsychology and social work, and co-director of the Center for Behavioral Health at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital] says, '...it is important for parents to remember that development varies across children, and that one age (such as age 7) is not the end of development, or a 'deadline for developing reasoning skills.' Cognitive development continues into adulthood, and as parents, it is our responsibility to continue to challenge and support our children.'
"Well said. It's just good parenting.
"I am a proud moderate. I drive a Tesla and a Hummer. I have too many guns but strongly support intelligent gun control. I have four children yet fight for a woman's right to choose. I am a motorcycle riding environmentalist. I am a heterosexual who proudly supports LBGTQIA+ rights. To me (and I believe to many of you) none of these things are mutually exclusive.
"The Transgender community needs moderates who support their choices, even if we don't agree with every one of their edicts. For some Transgender people (not all) to accuse supporters, like me, of transphobia is not a good look for their cause.
"Don't reject people who are willing to march, sing and stand with you just because we don't perfectly see eye-to-eye. We are still your allies.
"I, Dee Snider, will continue to support the Transgender community and their right to choose even if they reject me and moving forward, I am open to educating myself so I can be a better ally.
"Sincerely, Dee Snider, your cisgender, crossdressing ally."
In late April, Stanley took to his Twitter to weigh in on kids' gender identities and the parents who are "normalizing and even encouraging participation" in embracing them, calling it a "sad and dangerous fad."
The 71-year-old rocker made his comments as politicians in several states have attempted to restrict trans Americans' ability to seek gender-affirming medical treatments. In some states, such as Georgia and Tennessee, bans for minors have already been enacted in the first quarter of 2023.
On April 30, Paul shared the following statement: "My Thoughts On What I'm Seeing
"There is a BIG difference between teaching acceptance and normalizing and even encouraging participation in a lifestyle that confuses young children into questioning their sexual identification as though some sort of game and then parents in some cases allow it.
"There ARE individuals who as adults may decide reassignment is their needed choice but turning this into a game or parents normalizing it as some sort of natural alternative or believing that because a little boy likes to play dress up in his sister's clothes or a girl in her brother's, we should lead them steps further down a path that's far from the innocence of what they are doing.
"With many children who have no real sense of sexuality or sexual experiences caught up in the 'fun' of using pronouns and saying what they identify as, some adults mistakenly confuse teaching acceptance with normalizing and encouraging a situation that has been a struggle for those truly affected and have turned it into a sad and dangerous fad."
Among the people who reacted positively to Stanley's statement was Snider, who has been a longtime ally of the LGBTQ+ community.
"You know what? There was a time where I 'felt pretty' too," Snider tweeted to Stanley. "Glad my parents didn't jump to any rash conclusions!"
Snider continued: "Parents need to be less reactionary; Right and Left. No need to steer the child in either direction. Let the kid figure it out for themselves knowing their family is supportive. I had a vet/cop hardass dad who, while he shook his head A LOT…let me do my thing."
When a fan questioned Snider's comments, the singer said: "I guess I'll just need to turn in my LGBTQIA+ membership card…oh wait! I'm gonna need it in a big way TBA," apparently referring to the then-still-unannounced San Francisco Pride performance.
In 2021, about 42,000 children and teens across the United States received a diagnosis of gender dysphoria, nearly triple the number in 2017, according to data Komodo compiled for Reuters. Gender dysphoria is defined as the distress caused by a discrepancy between a person's gender identity and the one assigned to them at birth.
Transgender is a broad term for people whose "gender identity, gender expression or behavior does not conform to that typically associated with the sex to which they were assigned at birth," according to the American Psychological Association (APA).
According to a recent survey from The Washington Post and Kaiser Family Foundation, 78% of transgender adults in the United States say living with a gender different from the one assigned to them at birth has made them more satisfied with their lives.
In April, outspoken conservative rocker Ted Nugentshared a tweet in which he denounced the existence of transgender people and told people they could "debate" him if they disagreed.
"There is no such thing as transgender. You cannot change your gender. Comfortably numb is actually uncomfortably dumb. Debate me but bring your bib," he wrote.
BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).