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Foster the People perform in 2018. Photo: Monica Schipper/Getty Images for Radio.com

Mark Foster, the frontman of rock band Foster the People, told Billboard that he's considering retiring "Pumped Up Kicks," the group's most popular song, due to its continued associations with school shootings.

Why it matters: The song — written from the perspective of a violent teenager — hit #3 on Billboard's Hot 100 in 2011, but has since faced criticism over its subject matter. The South Florida Sun Sentinel reported last year that the song was on a playlist of Parkland shooter Nikolas Cruz.

  • The chorus contains the lyrics: "All the other kids with the pumped up kicks / You'd better run, better run, outrun my gun / All the other kids with the pumped up kicks / You'd better run, better run, faster than my bullet."

What he said:

"I've been thinking about retiring the song and just not playing it live anymore. I can't ask other people not to play it live, but the public made the song what it is — and if the song has become another symbol for something, I can't control that. But I can control my involvement in it.
"The way that people perceive the song is their choice, and it becomes a separate entity that I don't have control over. But I do have control over whether I'm going to take part in playing it over and over again. It's like pushing your song in somebody's wound — I don't really want to do it."

The big picture: Foster also reflected on how the song was censored and taken out of rotation by MTV and some radio stations after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012, saying "that a three-minute song can make somebody more uncomfortable than a two-hour movie."

  • "And I guess maybe it's the fluidity of it too — like, when something is being played everywhere around the world for a month or two, you hear it everywhere, and you really don't have a choice."

Go deeper: More than 800 independent musicians plot Amazon boycott over work with ICE

Go deeper

Australia joins U.S. in diplomatic boycott of Beijing Winter Olympics

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Photo: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

Australia is joining the U.S. in a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games in protest of human rights abuses committed by China's government, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Wednesday.

Driving the news: After the Biden administration's announcement that U.S. officials won't attend the Games due to the ongoing genocide of Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region of China, Morrison said at a Sydney briefing that Australia would follow suit as "it's the right thing to do."

Progressives to file resolution to strip Boebert's committee seats

Rep. Lauren Boebert walking through the Senate side of the U.S. Capitol earlier this month. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

House progressives are planning to introduce a resolution on Wednesday to strip Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) of her committee assignments, according to a Democratic aide familiar with the matter.

Why it matters: The move, which was first reported by the Washington Post, comes as progressives — anxious to see the right-wing firebrand face retribution for her recent comments — have grown frustrated by Democratic leadership's inaction on the issue.

Roger Stone won't cooperate with Jan. 6 panel

Longtime Trump confidante Roger Stone speaking in front of the Supreme Court on Jan. 5 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Longtime Trump confidante Roger Stone won't cooperate with the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot and will invoke the Fifth Amendment right not to testify, his attorney said Tuesday evening.

Why it matters: The announcement, first reported by ABC News, came hours after former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said he wouldn't cooperate with the probe.