Phil Anselmo caused quite the commotion last week when video of him giving a Nazi salute and shouting “white power” during a “Dimebash” charity event appeared online. Many critics and fellow musicians (most vocally Machine Head’s Robb Flynn) called the former Pantera singer out for his actions, which lead to Anselmo issuing a video apology himself. Now Rita Haney (the late Dimebag Darrell’s longtime girlfriend and one of organizers of the “Dimebash” events) has spoken out, and not just about Anselmo…
In a post made on Instagram, Haney declares her discontent with the way the Machine Head frontman chose to address Anselmo’s recent outburst. She especially takes issue with Flynn connecting Pantera’s name to Anselmo’s recent actions. While she doesn’t condone what Anselmo did and says she’s accepted his apology, Haney further declares that Flynn owes her an apology as well.
You can read Haney’s full statement here:
“So to answer all of you that have asked.. and for those who didn’t.. read if you like, but if not, don’t…
I think there is really only one thing to say when a man apologizes.. ‘Thank you for acknowledging you were wrong’ The one apology I am missing is the one from Mr. Flynn.. you took a ‘hideous’ opportunity to hop up on a soap box because you were butt hurt about your personal encounters with Philip that night.. you sent me a text message about it in the wee hours of the morning.. and it did not have anything to do with racism.. I support the message you were trying to put out there but not the method behind your message… you masked your real problem with something very important and very serious..
You said to me, ‘what would Darrell do’ ..He would have done exactly what was right… Speak to Philip man to man (like you described you witnessed at one time)… Not jump up in the press and hurt their music, our whole family and organization.. The last time I checked Pantera was not one man.. Rex, Vinnie, and Darrell brought us that music too… Now Philip has owned his mistake.. things ARE different today with racism and reverse racism.. And you were not just dropping “bombs” in your 20s. You weren’t calling the kettle ‘black’ not too long ago.. just as I have been guilty of myself!!!
There was wine along with many other bottles.. There was lots of joking around about Dave Chapelle with one of our best friends, Dug Pinnick.. and there were emotions that no one could understand, or experience about Darrell, that only his brother, Philip and Rex understand..It is a very heavy situation when any of us come together… Indulging happens.. None of these things can excuse that behavior tho.. but what happened on the stage was regretfully felt by one man… all jokes aside and on a serious note .
As far as the two words and gestures are concerned, on such an amazing and beautiful night… NO!!! I do NOT condone these actions.. I believe their origins are barbarically hideous and embarrassing.. I have accepted Philip’s apology as I want a better world to live in.. The message is a ‘true’ message Robb but sadly your method was not…”
Haney further added this additional comment:
“I am upset at Robb for including Pantera and their music as a whole.. And should I receive an apology.. Well I guess it depends on what it’s for and if it has a true method behind it.. Thank you though.. I have faith in both men.. We shall see.. I think they can both stand a harsh learning of their ABC’s – Action, Behavior, and Consequences.”
It’s understandable how some may view Flynn’s decision to speak out as a way to take advantage of a “hideous” situation (as Haney describes it). However, whether it was merely a stupid joke or not, it’s an issue that Anselmo had to address and be held accountable for (even if he has previously been outspokenly against his former band’s use of the confederate flag). So good for Flynn for being the first to stand up and demand better from Anselmo. But does Flynn owe an apology for looping in the rest of Pantera? That’s slightly more up for debate (after all and as mentioned, Pantera had no issue with using the confederate flag in their imagery back in the day. But then again, this photo shows that Flynn also was also more laid back about political correctness back in the day). Regardless, this is obviously a hot button issue that likely won’t die down any time soon (and possibly shouldn’t, for that matter).