The following is from an online chat with Mike Portnoy:
[AgentCooper] I was wondering whom the lyrics of Honor Thy Father were directed at? They seemed quite brutal, and personal.
[Portnoy] Let me clear this up right now….
[Portnoy] It is NOT directed at my father, Howard Portnoy…we have a GREAT relationship and I love him dearly…
[Portnoy] It is aimed directly at somebody else in my immediate family….
[Portnoy] If you take the key word from the title as well as the key word from the bridge (Crooked _____), you can figure out who it was written for…
[Portnoy] I’ve never been ghood at writing love songs, so i decided to write a HATE song!!!!
On Reddit, Mike said the following:
My step father and I reconciled many years ago…we now have a great relationship and do not look back at the negative years (including that song)… life is waaaay too short for bitterness and resentment