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Punk Rock Bowling founders respond to NOFX slam on October 1 victims

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Fat Mike of NOFX performs during the second day of the Punk Rock Bowling music festival at the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center in downtown Las Vegas on Sunday, May 27, 2018. Miranda Alam/Special to the Weekly
Miranda Alam/Special to Weekly

Founders of Punk Rock Bowling, a local music festival that took place Downtown last weekend, have issued a statement in response to offensive comments made by NOFX frontman and bassist Fat Mike on May 27.

In between songs during NOFX’s Sunday set, Mike paused to make a racist comment about Islam—“You play a song about Muslims, you’re going to get shot”—then hurled an insult at the victims of the Route 91 Harvest Festival shooting which took place on October 1: “At least they were country fans and not punk rock fans."

Mark and Shawn Stern, founders of Punk Rock Bowling, responded earlier today with a statement.

“In light of NOFX's comments during their performance at Punk Rock Bowling and Music Festival, we would like to offer a formal apology to those in attendance, the City of Las Vegas, the victims, and the families of 10/1.

"Las Vegas is home to the Punk Rock Bowling & Music Festival, and we do not condone the statements made from our stage on Sunday night. We take the safety of our festival goers seriously and want to relay that, there is nothing funny about people being shot and murdered, ever.”

Since its inception, NOFX—and especially Fat Mike—has been notorious for its outrageous, often misogynistic songs (“My Vagina” is just one example), as well as for making incendiary or racist comments.

In 2016, Michelle Threadgould of the Observer recounted her experience seeing NOFX at Warped Tour in 2000. “‘If you’ve got a hot girl in front of you, I want you to feel her up. Do it, ’cause she can’t get away,’” she recalls Fat Mike saying to the crowd.

In 2015, NOFX posted an image of their album The War on Errorism to their Facebook with the text changed to read “Happy Fourth of Jew-Lie,” and in 2013, the Dallas Observer reported Fat Mike yelled “f*ggot” at a fan during a NOFX set.

Despite hundreds of messages on NOFX’s Facebook page denouncing the band’s comments, the band has not given a public statement at the time of publication.

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Leslie Ventura is a staff writer at Las Vegas Weekly and Industry Weekly. She’s picked the brains of rock stars ...

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