Why Punk Rock is Good For Kids

This summer there will be an empty hole in the hearts of many young kids and former punks as it's the first summer without a nationwide Warped Tour. Warped Tour helped form the person I am. I found my taste in music, clothes, friends, views on politics, even the food that I eat. This year the closest it is coming to me is New Jersey, and it's on my due date. Somehow I don't think I'll be standing for hours in a parking lot, six hours away, in the sweltering heat with thousands of like minded people trying to get close to the stage... even though I'd love to! Even without Warped, punk rock is good for kids... and here's why:

01. It teaches kids to stand up for what they believe in. Punk may be about speaking up against injustice and wrong doing in the government, for animal welfare, or human rights, but kids can incorporate this into their daily lives too. Bully on the playground? One kid taking all the toys? Stand up to him for yourself, or for your friends. A kid hitting a cat? Earth Crisis sure has some opinions about that. 



"What's your plan for tomorrow?Are you a leader or will you follow?Are you a fighter or will you cower?It's our time to take back the power" - The Interrupters 

02. In punk rock, everyone is accepted. Individuality is embraced and celebrated. I'm reminded of this as I see the "Smash the alt right" shirts, the "Make Racists Scared Again" hats and the rainbow flags at punk shows.
"We live our life in our own way
Never really listened to what they say"- Bouncing Souls

03. It teaches you to get back up and try again. How many kids have had a punk rock band that didn't make it big? 99 percent. Most bands live and die in a garage or storage unit. It isn't about that. Even in a mosh pit where kids are slamming each other, if someone falls down they are picked up immediately and keep going. 
04. They support one another. Like I said above, a mosh pit can actually be one of the most supportive and friendly places, despite what onlookers may think. The goal is to keep everyone safe and have fun. Crowd surfers are literally depending on their punk rock family, many of whom they have never met, to support them. It's a family, even if you haven't met.

"No reason why- to beat up on the poser skin, no reason why- to keep the little kid's from getting in, No reason why- to take advantage of the people you know, no reason why- there's just no reason why" Gorilla Biscuits

05. It teaches them about music. Punk consists of lots of styles thrown together. Ska has horns, trombones, and saxophones. There are keyboards, drums, guitars, bass, plus a range of all different kinds of singing. It encourages kids to want to pick up an instrument and play, something that has been linked to higher test scores. It also shows them that whatever you play can be cool if you put your own spin on it. Violin in a punk band? Yup.
06. It teaches kids that if they want something done, they have to do it themselves. Way back before the internet, facebook, and blogs, there were zines. Zines were put together by kids who wanted a source of alternative communication that shared ideas. Kids in the punk scene make their own clothes, stud their own jackets, sew their own patches, record their own music, and make things themselves. Why DIY it? Because you don't want to support big corporations, big record labels, and big businesses that sell their soul to the man. Not always relevant to the real world, but wouldn't it be nice if everything could be this way?


09 10