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Tuesday, October 10, 2006

All Our Power's definition of punk

All Our Power was a punk activist conference that happened this past weekend in DC. I knew it was coming, lost track of the exact dates, caught up with it at their website just now.

The name of the conference (in my opinion) may refer to ideas expressed in local punk, activist & author Mark Andersen's book All the Power: Revolution Without Illusion, which advocates opening up to/interacting with & including mainstream America in punk's (& also The Left's in general) attempt to build a better America & world.

Here is All Our Power's definition of punk:

" PUNK: just a label, one among many for a creative, compassionate, questioning lifestyle; a spirit or attitude of truth-telling and do-it-yourself-ism, applicable for all times and places, and any stage of life.

PUNK is NOT necessarily a form of adolescent rebellion, a fashion, a certain type of music, or hairstyle or personal adornment, it is about the inside, the deep reality, not superficialities.

As the word PUNK has for centuries referred to people who were considered worthless, unimportant, and weak, punk politics most fundamentally suggest a stand with such throwaway people, reclaiming the term to suggest the immense value of all people, and the need to be in effective, on-going solidarity with them and their struggles.

Anyone who buys into these ideas, wants to make them real, anyone who is up for doing what they can with whatever they have wherever they are RIGHT NOW, those people are welcome in our idea of PUNK, no matter their taste in music, fashion, their age, race, religion, or nationality. "

Sounds pretty good.

And Mark Andersen & friends in Positive Force DC & others have been helping people out, pushing useful ideas for well over a decade and a half now.

Find out more at All Our Power's site.

Related: Positive Force DC.

Also related: All the Power: Revolution Without Illusion by Mark Andersen (co-author of Dance of Days: Two Decades of Punk in the Nation's Capital).

A glimpse of DC punk rock history can also be caught at Dischord Record's website.

- Sujewa

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