This series of posts was originally designed as an e-mail, which right now is hopefully whizzing around the world, creating awareness of discrimination against Goths. But as I wanted to add more and more quotes, I thought I'd begin posting it here so that I can add to it whenever. Many of these quotes are taken from shoutboxes on the old Piczo site.
|Where's the crime in looking like this?|
Source: We Heart It
If you’re a Goth, an emo, a punk, or a member of any other alternative subculture, then chances are you’re one of the people who have to endure hate, fear or abuse every single day. If you’re not, then consider this – what if this was you? Your child? Your best friend? What if every day, you, or someone you care about, was threatened, spat on, intimidated and humiliated by people at school, at work, or in the street? What if some members of your own family treated you like some kind of freak? What if you were blamed for causing trouble because of how you look when actually, you were the victim?
The quotes here are just a few, collected from Goths of varying ages all around the world, from shoutboxes and chatrooms on various websites. As you read this, I’d like you to keep just one thing in mind – how would you feel if this was happening to you?
"My school has done nothing more than producing hell's spawn whose only delight seems to be making fun of me. I'm really not that interesting but everytime I walk down the hallway all I hear is catcalls of "hey sup emo" or "go slice goth girl". The only thing I can do is pretend I don't hear it, but this has been going on for 2 years. Hell, even before i was 'officially goth' these SAME kids (on the most part) are the ones giving me a hard time. It just keeps getting worse. They corner me after school and circle around me like vultures. One time they cornered me and pulled up my sleeves - they thought that was hilarious. So far that's as physical as it's gotten asiden from the occasional 'friendly' shove, attempt to trip me or stealing my books etc. I go home from school as fast as I can because I'm afraid of what they will do next."
"As we got older things got worse, and although I had friends I was still the most alternative person at my school. Every day I would have things thrown at me, ranging from food, to stationary, to bricks. One particular day, a group of girls in my year threw a baked potato at me, which exploded all down my front, and when my father complained, the teachers said I deserved it for looking different on purpose."
People who victimise Goths are acting on misconceptions, false facts fed by the media and the world around us. Goths are not homicidal. Many Goths are in fact pacifists who shun violence. Why do we think Goths are potential killers? Because of Columbine? Well, the Columbine killers were not Goths. Wearing a black trenchcoat and listening to Marilyn Manson does not make you Goth. Avid fans of Manson are, in fact, Mansonites, who often dress in a similar way to Goths but are generally ignorant of true Gothic music and culture. Yes, SOME Goths do listen to MM. But Goth music originated in the 80s, and Goth bands include Siouxsie and the Banshees, Bauhaus, The Cure, The Cruxshadows and The Sisters of Mercy. Ignorance of Goth culture is partly what has led to Goths being so internationally hated and feared.
"I'm just shunned by most people in my school. When we're wearing our uniform I get stick anyway because I wear a lot of eyeliner and I have naturally pale skin, and this usually includes having my books stolen and graffitied, having stuff thrown at me in class and basically being either ignored or made fun of. Home clothes days are even worse because firstly I get petty remarks like "devil worshipper", "vampire" and "freaky bitch" and all the rest but then I get chairs thrown at me and I get tripped up in the lunch hall when I'm carrying my tray and stuff. It's gonna be even worse when I go back after the holidays cause I've dyed my hair. I don't get it....how is it hurting anyone else?"
"A group of boys were throwing pencils at me, and when the teacher told them to stop they said, "Oh but look at her! Can we just throw one more?" And the teacher let them. They threw a sharp compass at me, and when I left the room out of sheer anger and indignity, and refused to attend the rest of my lessons, I was suspended for a week, whereas my bullies were never punished."
Goths do not worship the devil. Goths are not all Satanists (and by the way, Satanists don’t worship the devil either…). Actually, many Goths are Christians, although many follow peaceful alternative religions such as Druidism and Wicca, or are atheist. Goths do not always wear black. Goths are not all depressed and suicidal. Whilst there are some Goths who may suffer depression or who may self-harm, it is NOT something related to the subculture as a whole. ANYONE can be depressed, it doesn’t matter who you are or what you wear. Being depressed does not make you Goth, and being Goth does not mean you are depressed.
"I am constantly at odds with my parents. They tease me even worse than the kids at school. Then when I try to correct them and tell them that being goth hasn't made me a depressed, homicidal maniac, they just yell at me and tell me that they have obiously failed as parents since they have produced such a fucked-up offspring."
"A mother who happens to be a punk drops her child off at a primary school in Preston. She is then beaten unconscious in the entrance of the school and hospitalised by another mother who doesn't like her clothes. The deputy head, having informed the police and ambulance, then informs the staff of the school in the staff room that 'It serves her right for dressing like a freak.' The rest of the staff (except me!) nod their agreement."
Goths CAN, and DO, smile and laugh and have fun. Just like other people do.