In a move that will likely be regarded as “huge,” “tremendous,” and “really, really great” by Donald Trump’s Twitter feed, Entertainment Weekly is reporting that Dee Snider has granted permission for the Trump campaign to use Twisted Sister’s “We’re Not Gonna Take It.” Perhaps more shockingly, Trump’s team went to the trouble of requesting permission to use the song in advance. This is in contrast to the previous policy of broadcasting copyrighted material without permission, only to discover the musicians who wrote those songs don’t want to be associated with a known jagoff.
While it would be easy to assume that Snider simply falls into the intersection of the same “Aging Hard Rocker/Extreme Conservative” Venn diagram as Gene Simmons and Ted Nugent, the singer made it clear that he didn’t grant permission based on the substance of Trump’s policies or views. Rather, Snider feels that the substance of the song is a good fit for the extremist stylings of the candidate.
“Thinking back to when I wrote the song and what the song is about, it’s about rebellion, speaking your mind, and fighting the system,” Snider said. “If anybody’s doing that, he sure is.” And by “system,” Snider presumably means the press, the rest of the presidential candidates, Syrian refugees seeking asylum, Muslims, women, the nation of Mexico, and basically anybody with the hubris to question Trump’s comments, actions, and regularly shifting positions.
Snider admitted that he didn’t expect to find Trump appealing, saying, “I don’t think either of us expected that we would like each other, but you know, Donald Trump is a pretty chill guy.” The Twisted Sister frontman also views his anthem as fair game for any party, political or otherwise, provided it is used in the service of being totally extreme. “Trump and Bernie Sanders are the two extremes. They’re raising holy hell and shaking everything up. That’s what ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It’ is about,” Snider said, recognizing that two old white guys are the change our country so desperately needs.