Travis Scott under fire after his Astroworld Music Festival catastrophe leaves eight dead and hundreds injured

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Rapper Travis Scott, long known for encouraging chaotic “raging” at his concerts, is being blamed for not doing anything to prevent the tragedy at his recent Astroworld Music Festival.

Since rising to fame in the early 2010s, Travis Scott has been a highly regarded rapper and is one of the best concert performers due to his chaotic, high-energy shows. Scott has always been the first to incite this “raging” activity, as he would call it, but Scott’s concerts that had always been viewed as fun and exciting, have now led to utter tragedy.

Houston, Texas native Jacques Webster, known by his stage name, Travis Scott, held his third annual Astroworld Music Festival last Friday, Nov. 5, 2021. This concert was supposed to be a fun, exciting chance for music aficionados to see their favorite artists perform, but it turned into a catastrophe for over 50,000 fans that were in attendance. 

As a timer started counting down for the multi-time Grammy-nominated rapper to walk out and perform, fans began pushing towards the stage at NRG Park, a stadium in Houston, causing a massive disturbance and chaos to ensue. This pushing and shoving would only worsen as the show progressed.

Due to the crowd surge of 50,000 fans driving forward, a literal crushing of those closest to the stage led to several of them losing the ability to breathe. The end result: eight people – aged 14-27 – lost their lives, and over 300 people were left injured. The festival has been labeled by attendees as a “death trap.” 

There is also speculation that the chaotic crowd response may have been aided by people being injected with unknown substances. According to CNN, “Investigators in Houston are working to determine all possible causes of death and injuries to concertgoers, including whether a batch of counterfeit pills possibly laced with fentanyl played a role, according to The Wall Street Journal.” Investigators have said that it will take weeks to get toxicology reports.

Some people who were injured are never going to be the same. For example, one victim was left brain dead, and Ezra Blount, 9, is in a medically induced coma after he was trampled.

Lucas Naccarati, a former United States Marine who performed CPR on two fans, stated in an interview to PEOPLE, “If you fell, you were just screwed.” As the intensity continued to rise, Naccarati recalled a young girl screaming, “Please, someone help me. Please, I don’t want to die. Please help me.” Naccarati recalled grabbing the girl before she fainted in his arms. Thankfully, the concertgoer is now fine.

This deadly chaos has led to immense controversy surrounding Travis Scott and his style of shows. Scott has received backlash because he did not stop the show to offer help to those in need. It can be seen on multiple clips taken by fans that those in attendance tried to bring awareness to Scott by simultaneously screaming at the rapper to “stop the show.” 

Multiple opportunities to prevent this devastating event were missed, and Houston Police Chief Troy Finner went to the press to address these issues. “Nine thirty, right there. That’s when a few people started going down,” Finner stated. “Our people stepped up and immediately went to the producers and told them, ‘Hey, we got people going down.’ This show ended at 10:10 pm. I just wanted to acknowledge that.” Finner also believes that if Scott had ended the show, it may have calmed the crowd.

In a video posted to the internet, Scott is seen noticing the presence of an ambulance amongst the crowd, but instead of helping to clear out the way, Scott yelled out, “I want to see some ragers.” A few moments later, fans were seen jumping on the ambulance.

Not only did Scott not end the show after noticing the ambulance in the crowd at around 9:30 pm, and after his producers had been warned by the Houston Police Department at around the same time, he also proceeded to bring out Drake as a guest performer. Being one of the most popular rappers in the world, Drake caused another crowd surge because everyone was excited to see him on stage.

While multiple parties are to blame for these fatalities, the way the audience behaved did not help the situation. A medic working at the festival took to TikTok to share his view of everything that went down in Houston. The medic, who goes by @remi.rich on TikTok, mentioned he saw three people on the floor in a span of 10 minutes; one of those was a girl he helped that had been unconscious and without a pulse for over five minutes.

“So many people are going down, so many people are getting injured, and my observations were that there was zero crowd etiquette at all,” the medic stated. “They just wanted to get closer to the show, closer to Travis Scott. They didn’t give a single damn about anyone around them. It was a total s–t show.”

“As a big Travis fan, it’s sad to see something like this happen,” Olympic Heights sophomore Florian Gashi mentioned. “I hope he can make a comeback to the top, but overall, I pray for the families of the victims.”

Travis Scott released a statement on Twitter, stating, “I am absolutely devastated by what took place last night. My prayers go out to the families and all those impacted by what happened at Astroworld Festival. Houston PD has my total support.”

During these tough times, Scott has offered to help in several ways. Scott will refund all tickets for Astroworld, help cover funeral costs for all who lost their lives at the festival and extend more help to all affected and in need. Also, Scott canceled his appearance at the Day N Vegas Festival scheduled for Nov. 13, 2021, out of respect for the victims. However, many do not view Scott as being totally respectful to the victims as he attended a Dave & Buster’s party following the Astroworld mishap. He has claimed he was “unaware” of the deaths caused at his show when he attended the party.

Scott’s girlfriend, Kylie Jenner, also shared her thoughts. “My thoughts and prayers are with all who lost their lives, were injured, or affected in any way by yesterday’s events.” Jenner also added, “I want to make it clear we weren’t aware of any fatalities until the news came out after the show, and in no world would have continued filming or performing.”

No matter how many apologies Scott, his management, or the festival organizers offer, consequences will follow. According to Billboard, “As of Monday morning, a least 14 lawsuits have already been filed in Houston court over the incident, which left eight dead and dozens more injured. In one case filed Saturday, a victim called the disaster a ‘preventable tragedy’ and accused Scott of having ‘actively encouraged and fomented dangerous behaviors.’” Drake is also being sued by some of the attendees, as they claim he “incited mayhem,” and, like Scott, did nothing to stop the chaos and help those in need.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Drake made a statement on the events that ensued at Astroworld. “‘I’ve spent the past few days trying to wrap my mind around this devastating tragedy. I hate resorting to this platform to express an emotion as delicate as grief but this is where I find myself,’ Drake wrote.”

This is not the first time Scott has been in legal trouble following a performance. Back in 2015, Travis Scott was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct after inciting fans to ignore security measures and climb onto the stage at his Lollapalooza set. Just two years later, Scott was arrested once again on a similar charge with police accusing him of inciting a riot at his show at the Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion in Rogers, Arkansas. 

In both cases, Scott pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct. Back in 2015 and 2017, this was viewed as nothing more than a marketing move for Travis Scott and a promotion of his legacy of being known for his “raging” concerts. 

Yahoo News stated, “​​Legal experts told Insider it’s unlikely Travis Scott will face any criminal charges related to the deadly stampede at his Astroworld concert in Houston, but he could be held liable in civil lawsuits.”

Unfortunately, this “raging” activity has led to utter disaster for Travis Scott and his fanbase, and all there is left to do is “send out prayers to the ones that [were] lost” as Scott stated on his Instagram following the disaster.

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