SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Twisted Sister’s ’80s rock classic, “We’re Not Gonna Take It” has been dropped as the unofficial anthem of this year’s SF Pride Parade & Celebration following a controversial tweet from the band’s lead singer, the festival confirmed to KRON4. The festival was on the cusp of officially announcing the song as Pride’s “unofficial rallying cry” and Twister Sister front man Dee Snider was due to perform the song on the festival’s main stage.
However, the relationship between the flamboyant rocker and the festival broke down after Snider tweeted his support for a statement from Kiss front man Paul Stanley that’s been widely panned as transphobic.
On Sunday, Stanley tweeted out a lengthy statement, that read in part, “With many children who have no real sense of sexuality or sexual experiences caught up in the ‘fun’ of using pronouns and saying what they identify as, some adults mistakenly confuse teaching acceptance with normalizing and encouraging a situation that has been a struggle for those truly affect and have turned it into a sad and dangerous fad.”
The tweet drew a divisive response, with many members of the right-wing media praising Stanley for his stance. Others called the tweet out as anti-trans and accused Stanley of mischaracterizing gender-affirming care as a “game.”
Others, like Offspring guitarist, Noodles, pointed out the irony of someone like Stanley, “who wore high-heels, makeup, & teased up hair his whole career,” questioning gender-affirming care.
On Monday, Snider weighed into the debate, retweeting Stanley and saying, “You know what? There was a time where I ‘felt pretty’ too. Glad my parents didn’t jump to any rash conclusions! Well said, @PaulStanleyLive.”
Snider’s expressed support for Stanley led SF Pride to reassess its relationship with the singer, who like Stanley, was also known for wearing makeup and sporting a flamboyant onstage look.
“Ultimately SF Pride and Dee have mutually agreed to part ways,” the festival said in a statement. “We appreciate Dee coming to the table.”
Read SF Pride’s full statement below:
San Francisco Pride was on the cusp of announcing Twisted Sister’s “We’re not gonna take it” as the unofficial rallying cry of this year’s SF Pride Parade & Celebration, with the band’s frontman Dee Snider performing the song on our center stage. Dee has always been a vocal supporter of LGBTQ+ rights.
However, when we were notified about the tweet in which Dee expressed support for Kiss’s Paul Stanley’s transphobic statement, we were heartbroken and angry. The message perpetuated by that tweet casts doubt on young trans people’s ability to self-identify their gender.
Transgender people, particularly transgender women and children of color, are disproportionately affected by hate and violence. And with transphobia proliferating and becoming more and more enshrined in law throughout the country — we have to stand up for the most impacted among us.
We have mutually agreed to part ways, but appreciate Dee seeing this as a teachable moment and a reminder that even allies need to be educated to ensure that they are not casually promoting transphobia.
To all our allies – we want to call you in – not call you out.
This year’s SF Pride Celebration will take place June 24 and June 25 with the annual Pride Parade set for Saturday June 25.