In a lengthy blog post, Fall Out Boy frontman Patrick Stump takes a moment to posit why bands including Nickelback, Creed and Limp Bizkit have become "ubiquitously hate-able."
It's true that you'd be hard-pressed to find someone openly professing their love for any of those bands at the risk of enduring ridicule, but it's that such hate has become culturally acceptable, if not demanded, which Stump finds rather troubling:
"For some reason, here I am crippled by a vague and probably unwarranted desire not to appear to be a fan of Nickelback and Dane Cook," he writes. "That’s sad. In this generation of blazing wi-fi and scathing tweets, I think it’s very easy to lose sight of anyone else’s opinion. We’re so busy broadcasting our latest cultural disdain that we scantly notice anything we enjoy."
Stump bemoans the fact that blogs have turned everyone not just into critics, but critics who don't take into account the amount of work and sacrifice bands and artists endure for their craft. And that includes groups subject to our collective hate, as "they worked and potentially still are working to be the best damned Nickelback they can be."
He astutely points out that "we derive our own identities from the act of hating," as "we connect on the things we are disappointed in." And while humans thrive on these simplest of connections, he suggests that perhaps as a culture we've exhausted "whatever can positively be gained by ignorantly dismissing things as loudly as we can."
Of course, Stump's proposal isn't entirely altruistic, as his own band teeters on the edge of cultural disdain.
"I can’t watch the HBO show Girls (which I love) without thinking to myself “Oh man, these characters and maybe even some of these actors would probably be too ashamed to be caught dead even knowing someone who still owns a Fall Out Boy shirt," he writes, adding he's been brushed off by many other artists because his band didn't have the right cultural cache:
"I can’t tell you how many times I (either as part of Fall Out Boy or as a solo artist) have asked another artist to tour together or work together on a song and been shot down on the grounds of 'Oh you guys are lame,' he wrote, and admitted that he's probably unwittingly done the same thing to other artists. "A simple 'No,' would have sufficed. But for some reason, we as human beings have to stamp it into the ground and shout it from the rooftops."
With all that in mind, as Fall Out Boy gears up for their U.S. tour and the release of their new album, "Save Rock and Roll," Stump no doubt is hoping the haters will tone down their innate desire to shout from the rooftops how much Fall Out Boy disappoints -- or grow up, leave the high school insecurities behind, and just cop to enjoying music other people find embarrassing.