Tankian’s message was delivered on Monday (June 1), prior to Trump’s address to the nation, as days of civil unrest were marked by protest demonstrations seeking justice and reform following the death of Minneapolis man George Floyd, who was killed under police custody.
As night fell, many demonstrations turned violent in multiple cities across the country and were marked by rioting and looting. This has led to further clashes with police officers and, on Friday (May 30), President Trump retreated to an underground bunker as protestors exercised their Constitutional right outside the grounds of the White House.
This act of retreat prompted the always politically-minded Tankian to respond as he questioned the nation’s foremost leader about designating the Antifa group as a terrorist organization, but failing to do the same with organized racist factions such as the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), whose history of instigating violence is well-documented.
Then there was a call for a forced resignation as the singer outlined a tactic used in 2018 as Armenia underwent revolution, rallying against their government leader.
“Run Donny run into your bunker,” mocked Tankian, who went on to note, “You may be the first US President to do so out of fear of your own citizens. A real leader would address the nation properly and a real man would go face the protestors on the streets in person. But like other corrupt undemocratic leaders in the past, you’ve realized they are not your people as you are not really our President.”
From there, the System of a Down frontman singled out other facets of corruption within the political system.
“These protests are not just over race but over institutional injustices beginning with the slave era electoral college that put you in power, K Street lobbying firms, superdelegates of a two party duopolistic Neo-liberal corporatocracy whose day has come,” asserted Tankian, who posited, “You make antifa a terrorist organization but not the KKK?”
In closing, the singer urged citizens to take action. “The lessons of the 2018 peaceful successful revolution in Armenia can be applied in the US and elsewhere in the world,” he wrote, outlining a basic plan when he added, “Coordinate online and block every street everywhere and force the regime to resign. The time has come. Your time has come @realdonaldtrump.”
Since Tankian’s post, Trump formally addressed the nation, but also instigated brute force upon nearby peaceful protestors in a coordinated attack en route to a church for a photo opportunity. A half hour prior to Washington D.C.’s 7PM curfew, peaceful protestors were forcibly dismissed with the use of tear gas (which is banned in warfare by the Geneva Convention) and guns that fired rubber bullets at the scattering crowd as seen here (warning: graphic).
The revolution in Armenia in 2018 was notably peaceful, something System of a Down drummer John Dolmayan has also urged. “Injustice can never be battled with injustice. If these protests were peaceful they would be supported by everyone irrespective of political ideologies. Instead they are separating people further, devastating the middle class and ultimately strayed away from what should be the focus of all of this, the wrongful murder of George Floyd.
Top 100 Hard Rock + Metal Albums of the 21st Century