Military gets nervous when I use Words Such As Burn

Military gets nervous when I use Words Such As Burn March 18, 2012

After lyrics to Aiden’s song Hysteria were intentionally taken out of context to imply that we were going to burn down churches… well Fort Bragg got a little nervous. But I’m proud of them, they really came through the ‘crisis’ in a big way.

We are now specifically guaranteed the right “to be critical of organized religion and it’s adherents.” In writing, no less. But we are still puzzled by the people who really believe we intend to burn churches! (Including chaplains!)

How am I supposed to introduce the band, Words Such As Burn as they take the stage 50 feet from the entrance to the main post chapel? It will get taken out of context, no doubt. Sometimes I feel like I’m dealing with kids.

The sales for this song go to support the Secular Student Alliance. No matter what your take on music genres is, Words Such As Burn are to be commended for philanthropy on their first single. This band is also playing a set just a little before Richard Dawkins takes the stage at Rock Beyond Belief.

I don’t want to ruin the surprise, but Todd Stiefel has let me know their set includes an extremely relevant cover song. I really liked his twist on it though, a special emphasis will be made… but no spoilers. Come check them out!

Words Such as Burn features five outspoken freethinkers from Raleigh, North Carolina. Between riffs ranging from hard blues to straight up rock, listeners will hear lyrics that actively promote secular values and a rational world view.


The recent release of their debut album, Flow, features a title track that explores a hidden cost of religion; the lost love and friendships of those whose beliefs cripple their ability to just let love flow. Words Such as Burn is happy to announce that 55% of the proceeds from their album, Flow, and 100% of the proceeds of the title track will go to benefit the Secular Student Alliance.  Their music is available for purchase on iTunes, Amazon, and other online music providers. You can get a free taste by visiting the Words Such as Burn channel on YouTube.

The band is comprised of Bruce Harris on lead vocalist and bass, Chris Holcomb on lead guitar,  Todd Stiefel on rhythm, Charles Stiefel on keys, and Sammy Harris on drums. Of particular note in that line-up would be the name Todd Stiefel, a prominent mover in the freethought community at large, and founder of the Stiefel Freethought Foundation. While not jamming with the band, Todd occupies his days as a full time freethought activist. His foundation strives to promote respect for non-believers and complete separation of church and state.

Words Such as Burn will be rocking the upcoming Rock Beyond Belief event at the Ft. Bragg military installation, in North Carolina on March 31. They will be sharing the stage with the likes of Richard Dawkins and Aiden in an all-day think-a-palooza punctuated with notable speakers and great pro-atheist bands. Attendance is free and open to the public.


Todd just wrote to me,

The funny thing is that the origins of the band name are similar to the way you referenced it.  It came from a workplace manual that said something along the lines of “Words such as ‘burn’, ‘shoot’, ‘blow up’ should be taken seriously and require immediate action.”

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  • frankb

    “Words such as ‘burn’, ‘shoot’, ‘blow up’ should be taken seriously and require immediate action.”

    If I understand this correctly, some military personel are intentionally misunderstanding “Words Such As Burn” in a very ironic way. The manual from which it came instructs people to look for implied violence when communicating with others who use these words. The manual is not advocating violence but rather proactively preventing violence by being alert for it. I hope I am getting this right.

  • F

    It’s too bad that when you must address the concerns of others regarding people at the event burning down churches, you can’t just say, “Are you serious?”

  • drumdaddy

    Don’t make the mistake of responding to intentionally derisive twisting of reality. The aim of those who would bring you down is to frame the conversation – their way.

    My advice would be to rise above all the expected “straw man” offerings by FOX Noise by immediately pointing to the real reasons for the rally. If asked by a reporter, if they even ask questions anymore, about some “straw man” topic, it would be most honest and effective to redirect the attention to a concise list of goals for the rally, because that’s what the public needs to hear. Detractors would like to reduce your efforts to a song with which they can frighten viewers and put you on the defensive. Dismiss crap with dispatch and jump immediately to relaying your message. This is a very positive rally and you have quite enough work to do without being sucked into defending yourself to creeps.

    I’m proud of you guys.

    “A straw man is a component of an argument and is an informal fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponent’s position.” – Wikipedia

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  • Velia Mafnas

    My condolences to his family. I hope all these cars and parts find a good home.

  • Military gets nervous when I use Words Such As Burn great ideas for this world!