Holy Wood Interviews

Bowling for Columbine

Marilyn Manson
2002 Oct 11

by Michael Moore

After Columbine, it seemed that the entire focus on why the shootings occurred was because the killers listened to Marilyn Manson.

Two years after Columbine, Manson finally returned to Denver.

There were protests from the religious right.

But I thought I'd go and talk with him myself.


When I was a kid growing up, music was the escape. That's the only thing that had no judgements. You can put on a record and it's not gonna yell at you for dressing the way you do. It's gonna make you feel better about it.

I definitely can see why they would pick me, because I think it's easy to throw my face on a TV, because I'm, in the end, sort of a poster boy for fear. Because I represent what everyone's afraid of, because I do and say what I want.

The two by-products of that whole tragedy were, uh... violence in entertainment and gun control. And how perfect that that was the two things that we were gonna talk about with the upcoming election. And also, then we forgot about Monica Lewinsky and we forgot about... The president was shooting bombs overseas, yet I'm a bad guy because I sing some rock'n'roll songs. And who's a bigger influence, the president or Marilyn Manson?

I'd like to think me, but I'm gonna go with the president.


Do you know the day that Columbine happened, the United States dropped more bombs on Kosovo than any other time during that war?

I do know that and I think that's really ironic, that nobody said, "Well, maybe the president had an influence on this violent behaviour."

Because that's not the way the media wants to take it and spin it and turn it into fear.

'Cause then you're watching television, you're watching the news; you're being pumped full of fear. And there's floods, there's AIDS, there's murder. You cut to commercial, buy the Acura, buy the Colgate.

If you have bad breath, they're not gonna talk to you. If you got pimples, the girl's not gonna fuck you. It's a campaign of fear and consumption.

And that's what I think that's it's all based on, is the whole idea that: keep everyone afraid, and they'll consume. And that's really as simple as it can be boiled down to.


Right. If you were to talk directly to the kids at Columbine and the people in that community, what would you say to them, if they were here right now?

I wouldn't say a single word to them. I would listen to what they have to say.

And that's what no one did.