Some call them noble but I say they’re scum
Put them in control you’ll see what you become
No excuses for lack of brains
You had your chance now you can’t complain
– Armored Saint ‘Dropping Like flies’
The word elitist is attached to those who feel strongly about a particular stance, heavy metal in this context. The mainstream has no idea of how entrenched the real heavy metal mindset is but, even more amusingly, neither does a majority of the metal audience. Ironically enough, the ones who go around throwing these redundant epithets (redundant because metal is indeed conservative and elitist) are frequently people who place themselves in blatantly advertising positions in the first place, going out of their way to live up to the “metal lifestyle”. This includes prepackaged physical appearance, demeanour, and political affiliations; essentially everything but a discriminating use of higher faculties when it comes to evaluating music and how said music interacts with the world in which it is created. The true comedy, however, is seen when this crowd is confronted with convictions that go beyond simple aesthetics; strike a nerve, and out come the E-slurs and how it is just music at the end of the day. Push them out of their comfort zones enough and they become spiteful and defensive, their previously steadfast belief in the power of hand gestures and 3-word cliches vanishing like so much chaff in the wind.
“The hipster’s greatest defense is irony. He will at various times pretend to be sarcastic, indifferent, and subliminally mocking to hide a basic inability to comprehend why some of us feel so differently and passionately about certain things. He strikes out in frustration because our private reality eludes him and he’s forever destined to be on the outside looking in. Preserve the circle, be loud, be proud.”
Using elitist as a pejorative is the recourse of the lowest common denominator. A judicious elitism has the power of introspection and objectivity, is simultaneously secured of conviction and aware of limitations, in oneself and in others. A non-myopic elitism spurs one on to a road of constant self-improvement as befitting one’s natural abilities while humbly acknowledging ways in which others may exceed us. It is often misconstrued as arrogance by those content in straddling the non commital middle ground; if it be arrogance, then it is an arrogance borne from idealism and not from the size of your record collection or photographs taken alongside rockstars. The vapid are ever too hasty to ascribe jealousy as the cause behind strong beliefs but it is beyond their comprehension that for some, the ire they vent has no root other than a deep-seated discontent with the hollow structure of the surrounding world.
YOU annoy us. YOU disgust us. We SPIT at your feet and in your face.