Music | September 25, 2017 12:34 pm

Gene Simmons on Charlottesville, President Trump’s Record So Far

Usually conservative-leaning rock star has some choice words on hate groups and the president.

Gene Simmons Wants to Trademark Iconic Rock Gesture
Musician Gene Simmons performs onstage during the 23rd Annual Race To Erase MS Gala at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on April 15, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images for Race To Erase MS)

One thing that’s often forgotten about KISS’ Gene Simmons—between all the controversial comments, white-and-black demon makeup, and lizard-tongue antics—is that he’s an Israeli-American Jew, whose mother survived a concentration camp.

So when Rolling Stone caught up with the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer to talk about some subjects—including how he feels about the current president—he might’ve caught his righty leaning fans off guard a bit with some of his answers.

Speaking of the chants at Charlottesville of “Jew Will Not Replace Us,” Simmons said “It’s the height of stupidity. Listen, hatred shouldn’t be allowed anywhere, but in this country, you have the right to get up and even spout hatred.” Per President Trump’s comments about “very fine people” on both sides of the protest, Simmons said, “If I was in government I would ban [hatred]…and if I could get it through, I would ban the Nazi party in all its forms, and put people in jail. Better yet, put them up in Alaska where they could be with each other and hate each other away from society.”

While explaining that he thinks Trump’s election is just and should be respected, Simmons did say he did not think Trump was doing a good job yet and that he needs to focus his energy on taking out ISIS, and figure out what to do about the “big problem” that is North Korea.