Fall Out Boy drummer Andy Hurley apologized to fans last week after images surfaced of him wearing a shirt bearing the image of the Rising Sun, a symbol that is considered offensive to various Asian cultures. According toAlternative Press, Hurley wore the shirt on November 13th for the band’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show appearance. He apparently did not pick out his own wardrobe and was unaware of the controversy surrounding the symbol until alerted by fans on Twitter. He penned his apology with the help of an anthropologist, Dr. Jennifer Raff.
In the statement, Hurley and Raff wrote, “The Rising Sun symbol, used by the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II, has come to represent horrors of wartime aggression (such as the Nanking Massacre) to many, particularly South Koreans and Chinese people.”
They continued, “The Rising Sun symbol is horribly offensive to descendants of people affected by these events, much like the Nazi Hakenkreuzflagge or the Confederate flag. Yet unlike those symbols, it continues to be used widely.”
Hurley added that his outfit was meant to connotate a “British invasion look” but that he was “totally ignorant” of the meaning of the Rising Sun, calling it “an extremely insensitive choice.”
He also said, “We think that it’s important to be sensitive to the meanings of symbols, and not to simply dismiss reactions to their misuse as ‘PC.’ Whether it be cultural appropriation or the uncritical use of symbols, we urge everyone to think more carefully in the future about the symbols they adopt.”
Fall Out Boy’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show performance, which includes a collaboration withTaylor Swift, will air December 10th on at 10:00 p.m. ET on CBS.
Fall Out Boy will begin a tour of holiday radio festivals next month, starting on December 4th in Philadelphia.