Carlos Santana Risks Cancellation: “Woman is a Woman and a Man is a Man”

By Mark Judge Published on August 25, 2023

Carlos Santana is about to get cancelled. In a video clip, the “Oye Como Va” and “Smooth” singer, guitarist and musical legend is seen addressing the audience in between songs. Santana says,

When God made you and me — before we came out of the womb, you know who you are and what you are. Later on, when you grow out of it, you see things, and you start believing that you could be something that sounds good, but you know it ain’t right. Because a woman is a woman and a man is a man. That’s it. Whatever you wanna do in the closet, that’s your business. I’m OK with that.

The clip ends with Santana saying he was “like this with my brother Dave Chappelle.” Comedian Chapelle has also defended womanhood against the present transgenderist evil.

Santana then, of course, issued an apology. It was posted on Facebook, but then mysteriously deleted.

The Man Is Now a Transgender “Woman” with a Police Baton

Whatever the final outcome of Carlos Santana’s eruption of common sense, his truth-telling is a heartening sign that rock and rollers, even if they are almost ready for assisted living, are speaking out against the Man. In this case, the Man is the bullying leftist Stasi secret police, destroying the lives of anyone who disagrees with abortion, communism or transgenderism. Furthermore, Santana represents the Latin community, which tends to be Catholic and socially conservative.

I once worked at Home Depot, which allowed me a lot of interaction with the Hispanic community, which is active and successful in the home improvement, lawn care and remodeling businesses. My boss was a Latino man. Millions of Hispanics are Trump supporters and Catholics. They know, as Carlos said (and praise be to God for it), that men are men and women are women.

Rock and Roll Once Told the Truth

Santana echoes Van Morrison, the Irish singer and legend who irritated the Stasi a year sago by blasting government COVID lockdowns. His Latest Record Project, Vol. 1, a recent 28-track double album from the 70-something Van Morrison, got savaged in the press. He had come out strongly against vaccine mandates and shutting down society, which particularly hurt musicians who make their living by playing live.

The Los Angeles Times said Latest Record Project “veers off in a conspiratorially cranky direction with songs titled ‘The Long Con,’ ‘Big Lie,’ ‘Why Are You on Facebook’ and ‘Stop Bitching. Do Something.’”  The Guardian (“depressing rants by tinfoil milliner”) and Rolling Stone (“a delightfully terrible study in casual grievance”) blasted the record. Rolling Stone’s Jonathan Bernstein wrote that “Morrison’s repetition sounds less like the trance-like mysticism of a Caledonia poet and more like a furious customer demanding a refund.”

For those of us us who grew up with rock and roll as art that told the truth, and who became or rededicated ourselves as Christians because it is the Truth, Santana’s defection is thrilling. It’s like when I first read Chesterton or C.S. Lewis or heard Billy Graham: “Yep, this is the truth.” Not some mystical otherworldly truth —though Christianity is certainly that — but a gritty, real truth, the truth about our bodies, what they are made for, how they are designed to express love in the context of sacred holiness.

Punk and New Wave Trained Us for This Moment

When I was in college in the 1980s, bands like the Replacements, X, the Dead Kennedys and the Clash revolted against racism, economic inequality, war … and also the suffocating power of the censorship-happy State. Dead Kennedys’ front man Jello Biafra was particularly angry and articulate about being spied on by government agents. Biafra was arrested, and in 1987 faced off against the people who wanted to shut him down, most notably, Tipper Gore. The Replacements wrote a song, “Androgynous,” mocking the fad of pop stars dressing up as the opposite sex. Anticipating the transgender mania, the 1984 lyrics are quite striking:

Mirror image, see no damage
See no evil at all
Kewpie dolls and urine stalls
Will be laughed at
The way you’re laughed at now.

Now, something meets boy, and something meets girl
They both look the same
They’re overjoyed in this world
Same hair, revolution
Unisex, evolution
Tomorrow who’s gonna fuss.

And tomorrow Dick is wearing pants
Tomorrow Jane is wearing a dress
Future outcasts and they don’t last
Today the people dress the way that they please
The way they tried to do in the last centuries.

And they love each other so
Closer than we know, love each other so

The Original Stasi Hated Punk Rock, Too

The punks at the time who were most savagely attacked were the ones in Red East Germany. In his book Burning Down the Haus: Punk Rock, Revolution, and the Fall of the Berlin Wall, Tim Mohr explores how the postwar German Stasi harassed, monitored and beat punk rockers. Between 1981 and 1985, one of the most popular bands behind the Iron Curtain was Wutanfall (“Tantrum”), a Leipzig six-piece group.

Mohr writes that Wutanfall “represented a loose but dedicated opposition to the state.” The leader of Wutanfall was a frontman calling himself Chaos. He got interrogated every week by the Stasi, whose harassment and beatings became so severe that Chaos ultimately gave up. “I’m not doing anything!” he once told his parents, who advised him to abandon music. “I just play music and spike my hair up with shaving cream, OK? I just want to have my own brand of fun, that’s all. That’s no reason for them to beat me half to death!”

Anarchy in the USA

The best punk rock was about questioning rising liberal orthodoxies. In a piece in the Washington Examiner, Daniel Wattenberg, who had been part of the New York punk scene in the 1970s, describes it well:

New York punks were unapologetic about their comfortable suburban origins, playful and irreverent in tone, and pretty affirmative about modern American life. Indeed, in many ways, New York punk represented a first skirmish within American popular culture with the then-gathering forces of political correctness.

Many punks, Wattenberg writes,

explicitly rejected at one time or another just about every one of the reverse pieties then associated with the Left: anti-commercialism, anti-Americanism, reverse racism, you name it. This was coupled with an assault on the stale residue of the sixties counterculture, the whole sleepy, slit-eyed, vegetative, sexually, intellectually, and emotionally subdued, value-neutral, tie-dyed, and forever-fried cannabis cult that worked its way through suburban basements and college dorm rooms in the seventies.

The same leftist scolds who were telling us what to play and sing and listen to in the 1980s … the same people who called me a Jesus freak and said I was “saying Mass” every week because I was enthralled by the Bible and Dietrich von Hildebrand … are now the modern Stasi who are after Carlos Santana. He needs to fire back the way the Replacements did in 1984: “I will dare.”


Mark Judge is a writer and filmmaker in Washington, D.C. His new book is The Devil’s Triangle: Mark Judge vs the New American Stasi.

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