never mind the protest

Sex Pistols’ John Lydon Decides Now Is the Time to Respect the Queen

Photo: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

Forty-five years after declaring that the queen “isn’t a human being,” John Lydon has changed his mind. The Sex Pistols singer (f.k.a. Johnny Rotten) has spent the past week walking back the sentiments of his band’s biggest song and paying respects to Queen Elizabeth II. “Send her victorious,” he said in a statement on her death, turning a few heads at the time. (Compare that to his former bassist, Glen Matlock, who tweeted, “God save the king — hope he’s not a silly old thing …”) Now, he’s not just reaffirming his support for Elizabeth but bashing his bandmates for nonexistent attempts “to cash in on Queen Elizabeth II’s death.” “In John’s view, the timing for endorsing any Sex Pistols requests for commercial gain in connection with ‘God Save the Queen’ in particular is tasteless and disrespectful to the Queen and her family at this moment in time,” a new statement on his website reads. The statement references the Sex Pistols’ promotion of the song in the wake of the queen’s death, which a representative for the band denied to Pitchfork. (It would be far from the first time that Lydon got into a row with his former bandmates over the use of their music.) Lydon’s statement goes on to call the song “historical” — as if the queen it was about didn’t live 45 more years — and claim that “he has never supported the monarchy.” We don’t know if he means it, man.

Sex Pistols’ John Lydon Respects the Queen Now