Virus Syndicate Video Banned in France Sees U.S. Release

“WARNING: This video is a fair reflection of the WORLD WE LIVE IN. We are not glorifying, exaggerating, or MANIPULATING the images. This is reality. Everything in this video SYMPTOMATIC of the world we live in. Some may say our ‘elected’ GOVERNMENTS are being CONTROLLED by a hidden elite of PSYCHOPATHS. Recognize the truth for what it is. It is our responsibility to make things change. HATE has 4 letters…but so does LOVE. ENEMIES has 7 letters…but so does FRIENDS. POSITIVE over NEGATIVE.”

This is the opening image for the music video “Psychopath” by UK group Virus Syndicate, a disclaimer image much like one would see before an episode of Tosh.O or Jackass. The video’s release has gathered quite a bit of heat due to its content. Themed around the terrors of the world (both abroad and at home) the video has several clips of terrorism, prostitution, drug addiction, and domestic violence mixed with a base of women dressed in lingerie. Based on its content, the video has been banned in France, clearly in light of the recent series of attacks that happened only a few short weeks ago. While the video is graphic, it sends a clear message. The video has just been released in the U.S. and one can see why it would be a little too much for the French people at this point in time, but is banning it the answer?

It’s unfortunate that by sheer coincidence, the images in “Psychopath” reflect very real and terrifying events that hit too close to home in France. It takes time to shoot, edit, and release a music video. So, the content and productions of this video was already in the works long before the events in Paris. It’s clear that Virus Syndicate is making a statement. They’re outlining the issues, but not sugar-coating the reality of the state of the world. The images are raw and in your face, but not prolonged or gory. An image of the Twin Towers falling is undoubtedly uncomfortable, but it happened. It often harms more to mask the truth. Echoing what is said in the video’s disclaimer – it is our responsibility to make things change. If we ignore that terrible things are happening, we have no chance in making a difference. This is likely the message that Virus Syndicate is attempting to give, banning the video suggests they’re rubbing dirt in the wound – which is incorrect.

One can only hope that the banning of “Psychopath” is only temporary. It is completely understandable for one to desire a time of mourning before going back to the front lines, but we cannot hide from the truth and we cannot ignore the atrocities that happen if we have any hope of making the world a better place. One can only hope that those who have banned the music video will allow its release in France sometime in the near future. Virus Syndicate did not mean to harm anyone in the release of this video, they only meant to open everyone’s eyes to the events that several government and news outlets choose to mask from the public.

Ashley Cizek

Went to school at UW-Madison, graduating with a BA in psychology. I hula-hoop, I write, I enjoy sunlight.

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