Jared B. Houghtaling
Alien Culture –Punk Rock
When this paper was assigned, I immediately thought of my brother. Ever since he was a teen he has been part of the punk rock music. I on the other hand never really listen to any kind of music until I was 18 years old, and even then I only listened to classical and classical rock. Thus whenever I looked toward my brother and his love for the punk rock culture, it would look alien to me. I did not like it because of the loud hardcore music and what I observed to be barbaric actions taken when punk rockers formed pits at concerts. It confused me that my brother liked it because both my brother and I have always liked the same things for the most part. Because of this I wanted to have a conversation with my brother to see what was special about this “alien” culture.
When I asked my brother to talk about the punk rock culture I did not give him any guidelines on what we were talking about, or any borders as to how far off track he could wander with the conversation. I did this because of the main feeling I had when my brother began to talk. It was the feeling of curiosity, and the desire to want to truly understand my brother’s appreciation for punk rock. My brother rambled for over an hour and a half, and at the end of the conversation he thought that he had gone completely of subject. But my brother had delivered to me the values that were so important to him that were apparent in the punk rock culture. The main values that I learned about that came from this culture were family, understanding, and freedom.
The value of family came apparent when my brother started talking about the concerts he has gone to in the past. What I had viewed as barbaric actions performed in the pit was actually dancing and people who have never met before having a good time. My brother also explained that during a pit experience that everyone watches out for each other in the pit to make sure that no one gets hurt. He also talked to me about how the band and all of the audience usually have a good time interacting with each other. These concerts would represent family reunions more than concerts.
This also led to the value of understanding and freedom becoming apparent to me. Because the band and the audience treat each other more like family than just the band and audience, they have a deeper connection that would otherwise be possible. My brother also explained to me that people of the punk rock culture have a deeper level of understanding that I never knew of before. My brother explained to me that people of this culture have an interest in
most people no matter what their culture, race, sex, sexual orientation, religion, and other such things, because every person is different and that makes that person interesting. Thus their minds are open to different views or ideas and do not shut their minds to different possibilities. This shows a value of freedom and understanding because they will not let preconceived notions affect the way they think about a particular person or idea. Thus the have freedom from peer pressure, and will come to their own decisions. After I had talked to my brother I realized that my preconceived notion of this culture was completely unjustified. My brother had shown me the error of my judgment even though he does not know it. As of right now I have nothing but respect for this culture. The conversation also showed me that I have to keep my mind open and positive about anything I come into contact with in the future.