Saturday, March 29, 2008

What I am listening to right now

Right now I am listening to Minor Threat, a hardcore punk band from the 1980s.

Minor Threat were the original straightedge band. Straightedge was a movement in American hardcore punk rock that rejected the use of drugs, alcohol and casual sex.

Back when I was 17 and 18, after I had given up alcohol (after a horrible experience on a drunken night out) I aspired to be straightedge. I was mocked by other students at high school because I did not drink, smoke or use Marijuana, so it was really encouraging to think that there was a radical movement that was opposed to that stuff. The straightedge identity made me feel confident in my rejection of the values of my fellow students. Later when my commitment to the Christian faith became more intensified, I no longer felt the need to identify myself as straightedge.

Now that I have become the great beer lover that I am now, I can no longer agree with the straightedge thing (though I do work in substance abuse treatment). However, I do like straightedge hardcore and admire the spirit of it.

It is kind of nice to think that there was a youth subculture that rejected degenerate and hedonistic lifestyles. Straightedge also avoided the negative political posturing of a lot of punk rock and instead presented a far more positive lyrical message.

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