Animal rights activists want Metallica booted from the Glastonbury music festival because frontman James Hetfield is an enthusiastic hunter, the Telegraph reports.
The page says that Hetfield’s “support of big game hunting…is incompatible with the spirit of Glastonbury and brings its good name into disrepute.”
Hetfield, who once admitted that he missed his son’s birthday while hunting bears in Russia, is a member of the NRA and has described himself as “pretty conservative on a lot of things.” “I love nature,” he said in a 1993 interview with Rolling Stone. “I love the wilderness, and there is not much more of it left. It makes me hate people. Animals, they don’t lie to each other. There is an innocence within them. And they’re getting fucked.”
Many hunters consider themselves proud conservationists, with groups like the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation working to preserve and maintain habitats for game animals throughout the country.
Glastonbury emerged from the free festival movement in the ’70s and is still associated with many aspects of progressive, hippie culture. Metallica is the first metal band booked to headline the festival, a controversial move by festival organizers — Hetfield’s hunting hobby aside.
Some have criticized Metallica’s decision to frontline the festival, with Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson calling Glastonbury “the most bourgeois thing on the planet” and avowing that they would never perform there. “Anywhere Gwyneth Paltrow goes and you can live in an air-conditioned yurt is not for me.”
“We’re fairly thick-skinned,” said Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich. ”Glastonbury is like the Holy Grail in England, and we’re respectful to that. But if somebody sits there and talks about petitions or what some other guy says, there’s a point that it just becomes ridiculous.” In a separate interview he added, “Glastonbury is the biggest, greatest festival on this planet, and we’re headlining Saturday night. Bring it on. We’re going to show up and have fun, but all the hoopla is interesting.”