As a kid around the age of 15, I was lost and confused. I knew that I didn’t have it all together, and
everywhere I looked people acted as if they did. My thoughts and ideas would change day to day as
I talked to one person and then the next.
I needed a concrete feeling. I tried going to church and
finding a release through God, but I was unable to believe. I tried looking at all my friends, but they
were all naive, so I turned to music. Music has become my religion, it clearly defines the questions I
have no answers to.
I found that everything that irritated me also irritated the people in the bands I
started listening to. People label this type of music as “punk.” “Punk” is defined in Webster’s New
World Dictionary as “a loud, fast, and deliberately offensive style of rock music,” and it defines “a
punk” as “a) a young hoodlum b) a young person regarded as inexperienced, insignificant, etc.
1slang poor; inferior.
” That is the worst misinterpretation I have ever come across. The members
of many punk bands have gone to college and are quite intellectual. Intellect is the basis of a punk
attitude. Punk is about change, and as defined by the band, Propagandhi, “The basis of change:
educate!/Derived from discussion, not hate, not myth, not muscle, not etiquette.
/ Intellect, not
‘re-elect!’ Status symbols yield to respect between sex, species, environment…yup!” (Propagandhi,
“Hate, Myth, Muscle, Etiquette”).
Punk songs aren’t about going out and doing drugs, breaking
things, and harassing people, they are about life, life as a kid. And since I’m “not really understanding
what it takes to be a man, I think I’ll stay a kid while I can” (Assorted Jelly Beans, “Plain Life”). It
gives people permission to act 18 when they are 50. Punk lifestyles are full of a positive energy that
many people lose when they “grow up.
” Existing as a punk takes the concepts of being an adult and
combines them with being a kid. The result is a much simpler and entertaining life. The first issue that
punk music covered for me was religion. I felt like everyone had some higher power to look to when
things didn’t work out, everyone but me.
I couldn’t conform myself to the ideas of a higher power
because the interpretations of reality that brings seem so dillusional to me. There appears to be so
many unheard truths in lyrics like, “They say I shouldn’t commit no crime/cos Jesus Christ is watching
all the time,/ so what, so what./ So what if he’s always over my shoulder./ I realize the truth as I get
I get to see what a con it is, because it’s my life,/ mine, not his” (Crass, “So What”). I always
felt that if there was an almighty and pure God that He/She would not make rules like “obey no God
other than me.” Where does that leave everyone raised under any other religion? A child in India will
most likely be raised as a Buddhist or some religion other than Christianity. It is not their fault that
they don’t follow the Christian God, especially if they haven’t heard of the Christian God.
I don’t see
the sense in a all powerful God who shows less sensitivity to people who don’t ultimately have the
choice of who they follow. Furthermore, any God that is supposedly for the good of mankind should
be more concerned with the moral actions of mankind than their preferences of faith . And how
could a Savior expect to be worshipped by everyone under the circumstances of today’s world. Life
isn’t fair, so how does that play into an equal religion for all? Hearing the song “No” by the
Subhumans brings this thought to an all new reality.
The lead singer claims, “No, I don’t believe in
Jesus Christ./ My mother died of cancer when I was five./ No, I don’t believe in religion./ I was
forced to go to church and I wasn’t told why.
” At one time I felt alone with these ideas, all my family
and friends followed the God in which I was detached. I felt like I was doing something terribly
wrong, like I had to conform. But when I started hearing these same thoughts in punk music for the
first time I felt secure in my own disbeliefs. “Beliefs