All That Remains

All That Remains’ Phil Labonte Further Explains His Stance On Gun Legislation, Not Apologizing For Homophobic Slurs


All That Remains vocalist Phil Labonte has spoken further on his stance against implementing extra elements of gun control in the wake of the Parkland, FL high school shooting that claimed the lives of over a dozen people. Labonte‘s opinions on the matter have certainly been controversial, having released this video and appeared on Infowars to discuss the subject.

Appearing on the latest episode of ‘The Ex Man With Doc Coyle‘, Labonte dived deeper into the matter. When Coyle (also of Bad Wolves, etc.) asked Labonte if he feels that he is a good choice to speak on the matter given his vested interest (Labonte has/had a partnership in a gun store Highlander Arms, whom he actively promoted in the past,) Labonte responded:

“I invested in my buddies shop when he started out… I don’t know if I’m the best person or not, but I think that I’m only the person that’s really kind of doing it, in our world [the heavy metal scene.] So whether or not I’m the best person, I don’t know if that’s my call to make. I’m the guy doing it, and I’m the only guy doing it.”

“A lot of people aren’t really clear when they say we want a solution for this. You hear people say ‘I want a solution for these mass shootings.’ So then you’re left with what solution are you looking for? Because if you can figure out a way to stop the person from going and and doing it, I think most people would be happy, right?

But I think that there’s a certain segment of the population that when they say ‘solution’, they’re only thinking new legislation about guns. And I think that the evidence is—and again, that’s not saying everybody. I’m not trying to speak for everybody that says I want these things to stop.

Not everybody is saying ‘I want more gun control.’ You have to really hear what the person is actually saying. So you need to get more information from them, you need to talk to them.

It’s hard to talk to people about different legislation and different things that make guns different. And how similar this gun is to that gun and all the different nuance in it. It’s hard to talk to them about it if they feel like trying to talk to them about it is trying to dissuade them or change their opinion or whatever.

So I wasn’t trying to change anyone’s preconceived notions or opinions about guns or gun control. I was trying to let people understand the realities of how difficult it would be to pass the type of legislation that it seems like the most fervent gun control people want.”

The conversation then delved into potential solutions to mass shootings and such outside of gun legislation, particularly in the mental health field. It also touched on how semi-automatic mechanisms found in the AR-15—the gun used in many of America’s mass shootings—are found in a number of other weapons, which could further complicate legislation. Civil liberties and more were also discussed.

Also broached was Labonte‘s usage of homophobic slurs. When asked if anyone he was in business with, label wise, etc. asked him to apologize for his actions, he offered:

“The first time I got into big trouble when I said the ‘f-word’ [the homophobic variant] on the internet… Not my greatest moment, but I would apologize for lashing out at the dude.

It was wrong to insult the guy [Labonte called Black Veil Brides singer Andy Biersack a homophobic slur back in 2011.] Because it was just dumb. It was about the way that he was dressed and it was totally stupid. I won’t apologize for using a word that someone was offended by.

I won’t say I’m sorry for swearing. Because that’s all it is, it’s a vulgarity. So I won’t apologize… And offensive is specific to the person.

And seeing as there hasn’t been a person that has come up and said ‘I was offended and I took that to heart, and I thought you were talking about me.’ Because it obviously wasn’t talking about anyone except for the specific person that I was referring to, I won’t apologize to society.

Because society doesn’t accept apologies. So I will say I was wrong to do something, but when it comes to people that want to tell you you have to apologize for this, because you offended people or you did this, I won’t say sorry for that stuff. I won’t let someone bully me into an apology that I don’t really mean.”

Later, when it was pointed out that the platform of InfoWars was a controversial one that could devalue what he was trying to say about gun control, he replied:

“The reason I went on InfoWars is because, 1: I do think that if I can get anyone to listen to what I was saying in the video, I think that it is a benefit to the conversation about guns and gun control; If only because they’re hearing someone speak in reasoned and measured tones about the difficulties of passing laws.

I think there’s values in that alone. So going on InfoWars and getting people to hear that—whichever side that they’re on—that to me was a win. The fact that it’s InfoWars, I’m kinda like that’s kinda fun, it’s funny…”

Meanwhile Labonte and Unearth frontman Trevor Phipps have been discussing the issue of gun control via Twitter today (February 23rd,) see below for that conversation: