41 years ago Steve Dahl pulled off #DiscoDemolition at Chicago White Sox Comiskey Park that now rages in a controversial light. Was it an organized HATE CRIME event against minorities?
Dahl continues to defend himself against accusations of racism and homophobia saying he was a disenfranchised 20-something rocker letting off a little steam.
While many believe that the re-examination of the cultural significance of this event is a product of #BlackLivesMatter, even in 1979, there were some who called out the event as ethnic cleansing of rock radio and and akin to NAZI-ESQUE book burning.
Most prominent was white Rolling Stone rock critic Dave Marsh who wrote in December 1979: "The antidisco movement, which has been publicized by such FM personalities as notorious Chicago DJ Steve Dahl, is simply another programming device. White males, eighteen to thirty-four, are the most likely to see disco as the product of homosexuals, blacks and Latins, and therefore they’re most likely to respond to appeals to wipe out such threats to their security. It goes almost without saying that such appeals are racist and sexist, but broadcasting has never been an especially civil-libertarian medium."
Someday there will be a doctoral dissertation written about DD exploring the controversial overtones in great detail.
For me personally, I have had many black and gay friends who have provided me a new perspective on #DiscoDemolition in the past year.
Full disclosure: I missed the event because I was a US Army physician stationed in Germany in 1979 or else I would have been there as a disenfranchised 20-something white rocker.