Marilyn Manson has been discussing the aftermath of events in May when 15-year-old Justin Doucet of Louisiana, ordered a teacher to say "Hail Marilyn Manson" at gunpoint, and began shooting when she refused. He missed, but went to a toilet where he shot himself in the head, finally dying some days later.
Now Manson, real name Brian Warner, tells Spin Magazine: "On the new record I say, 'Fuck the TV and the radio - I'm gonna take credit for the death toll'. It's all I get blamed for. So if I'm going to get blamed for it, I want credit for it.
"I'm not saying I agree with it - but I'm not saying I don't agree with it. I'm not some kind of PC tree-hugger. But I'm the last person who causes harm in the world, and if people are worried about what my music does, why isn't anyone saying, 'Shouldn't we worry about what he does?'"
Manson says his initial reaction to the Louisiana event was, "Where did he get the gun - and why can't I get one?" He believes his phone was tapped during the Columbine massacre in 1999 and says he's received more death threats than he can remember. And while he says he doesn't waste time worrying about his own safety, he thinks these events make it more important to create music.
He says: "In no way would I say what I do is just entertainment. In fact, I love to insult shit I don't like by saying, 'It must be art because it's not entertaining'. The people who stay are going to love it, and I'm going to love it or I wouldn't do it."
The singer cites the example of the song Pretty as a Swastika on his latest album, The High End of Low, explaining: "It's shocking to me that it's easier to buy a gun in Wal-Mart than it is to buy my record. They won't put the title 'Pretty as a Swastika' on the cover - but at the same story they've have Valkyrie, for example, which actually has a swastika on the cover. I'm not even using the symbol - I'm used the word.
"I'm not saying anything about Hitler, the Holocaust or Nazis. I'm not trying to say, 'Oh, it's a Hindu symbol'. Of course I know what it means. What do you think this song means? Is it a compliment? Is it an insult? I'm saying you're as pretty as a swastika... Art is a question-mark. You fill in the blanks. That's what music is about."