Rock band Five Finger Death Punch to fix music video about veterans’ homelessness


This screen grab shows a scene from the new music video for the Five Finger Death Punch song, “Wrong Side of Heaven.” It focuses closely on veteran homelessness, sharing numerous statistics about the subject. (YouTube screen grab)

Last week, Checkpoint broke down a new music video by the band Five Finger Death Punch. Set to their new song “Wrong Side of Heaven,” it sheds light on veterans’ homelessness as a societal issue that deserves attention.

The video has a few factual problems, however.

For one, it states that there are “300,000 homeless veterans sleeping in our streets,” and implies the number is rising. In actuality, the U.S. Department for Housing and Urban Development estimated that there were 57,849 veterans on the streets on any given night in 2013. That’s a significant number, but it’s actually down from 2010, when there were about 76,329 homeless veterans on a given night. An official with the independent National Coalition for Homeless Veterans says it also uses HUD’s estimates.

The video also scrolls a list of veterans charities as it concludes. But the band lists a few nonsensical organizations and locations to help veterans. Among them: The Armed Forces Network; a TV channel run for deployed U.S. troops; the Nellis Air Force Base Web site; and a Web site designed to provide information for families of troops in the Maine National Guard.

A publicity firm working with the band, 10th Street Entertainment in New York, released a statement to Checkpoint Thursday night saying it is “working on correcting the errors in the crawl at the end of the video.” It added that it also has updated information on the site www.5fdp4vets.com, which links to a site on which the band says it is raising money for veterans charities.

The music video was viewed more than 1 million times on YouTube in the first week after it was released, and about 1 million more in this second week.

Dan Lamothe covers national security for The Washington Post and anchors its military blog, Checkpoint.
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Dan Lamothe · August 22