Elias Mohr / The Diversity and Acceptance of Punk: Tolerance of the Scene

 photo by  Cheyenne Thomas

photo by Cheyenne Thomas

Punk is the most diverse (and accepting) scene that collective music has ever been graced with knowing. You can be street smart, or bookish. Maybe you’re dark and mysterious, or bubbly and outgoing. Is your wardrobe filled with thousands of dollars of tailor-made suits, or do you prefer to bunk naked in a dumpster behind a Denny’s? Does it matter? No! Punk doesn’t give a flying red fuck who you are! That’s its beauty: tolerance. Not just tolerance within its constituents’ appearance or acceptance of its main ideologies of nonconformity, Left-Liberalism, Anarchism, and Nihilism. I’m here to discuss its tolerance to not only those who lurk around societies outskirts but those who are traditionally seen as enemies to Punks being tolerated. Even those who lurk on the outer fringes of the figurative Punk acceptance list.

Punk is best known for its social conscientiousness and its political charge. However, did you know that Apolitical Punks exist? Punks… without an agenda? What?! It’s true! G.G. Allin, crazy as he was, was mostly Apolitical, apart from a few socially charged screams here and there. The Ramones were decidedly Apolitical as well. Johnny Ramone being a Conservative and Joey being a Liberal would’ve brought forth a terrible mix, had they decided to criticize the Man. Pop Punk disregards political ideals, opting to not be a casualty to society.

There’s a small subgenre within Punk that are both Christian and Conservative. They are literally the opposite of what most mainstream Punk stands for and perpetuates. Remarkably, they’re just as accepted as any other collective or individual!

Punk even has a small sub genre consisting of strictly Muslims. Known as Taqwacore, this small band of Punks is composed of bands which are made of members who are solely Arabic in descent. They have no one sound and some reject the label of Taqwacore as Islamophobic and racist. Nevertheless, I find it amazing that a group that has been marginalized to a great degree in America can find solace in Punk.

Whatever your beliefs, style, customs, or creed, Punk will accept seemingly anyone with open arms. It may be labeled as dirty, obnoxious, and loud; however, intolerance will never be compared with Punk. Its tolerance is its sole reason for its continuance and popularity, it’s the genre’s greatest attribute. It’s as well an attribute we can all add a little of into our lives.