Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Great White Case Closes

As the Great White case winds to an end, I wonder whether I am the only person who feels amazed that any one person is being blamed for this.

For those unfamiliar with the situation, Daniel Biechele was the manager of Great White, a hair metal band from days past. In 2003, the band mounted a big show in Rhode Island, and as part of the show, (the wholly unqualified) Biechele, set off extremely dangerous pyrotechnics that ignited the club. The fire resulted in the deaths of 100 and caused injury to about 200 others.

While the whole incident was extremely unfortunate, if blame is going to be passed around I can only imagine there must be about a dozen or more guys who were party to the stupidity of trying to start a pyrotechnics show inside a medium sized wholly unsafe club. The road manager didn't walk in with a firecracker tucked underneath his shirt and then chuck it into the crowd. They set up an elaborate display in full view of many, and now Biechele has to sit there and bear the brunt of it as one teary family member after another comes up to basically treat him like an outright murderer. Meanwhile, somewhere across town the club managers' trial is still pending and they've plead not guilty.

I worry that while many people think "just let the hair metal guy take the fall" this case may be setting a dangerous precedent of blaming band tour management for decisions that were agreed upon and carried out by an entire team of people.

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