Why 80s UK Punks Wore Swastikas

Why 80s UK Punks Wore Swastikas

Because nothing says rebellion like nazi paraphernalia.
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Recalling British punk rock of the 80s we often think of "Dead Kennedys" and of course, "The Sex Pistols." The stereotypes of the spiked hair, leather, piercings, and safety pins are remembered to this day and hold true to an extent for punk fashion starting in the 70s. What many forget or don't realize however is a certain facet of that fashion: the swastika.

For punk teens of the time it was all about the music and rebellion. The intent wasn't to alienate those who were Jewish or to spread an anti-Semitic message, at least for most. Ironically, "The National Front" -an anti Jewish and immigrant organization- tried to recruit young members from the punk movement. This divided fans as well as major bands. Sid Vicious of "The Sex Pistols" was of those who sported the swastika as an act of rebellion but did not adhere to its ideals or the history behind it. One could have supposed that anyway with his relationship with Nancy Spungen, who was in fact, Jewish. Meanwhile, the band "The Clash" refused to let anyone play their instruments at a punk festival who was wearing a swastika.

The Clash
The Pistols' and The Clash's managers Malcolm Maclaren and Bernie Rhodes also argued because of this. Maclaren was on the same side as front man Sid Vicious meanwhile, Rhodes agreed with his band members. Meanwhile, the punk genre as a whole was an "inclusionary haven" of sorts, to quote Vivien Goldman of The Guardian. Just being 4 decades or so after World War II, Jewish Brits identified with the misfits and outcasts that made up punk culture. The dilemma was whether the swastika fit the "rebel" on the outside bill or if it was just in extreme bad taste.

Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen
Punk as a whole including managers Maclaren and Rhodes were against racism and bigotry, their influence helping to start organizations like "Rock against Racism". American punks were getting over Vietnam and those in the UK who adopted the "fashion statement" considered it to be just another thing against authority. The real question is for the generation now and those before us, as well as after us. Was it completely out of place? Should all bands who wore swastikas have been banned from playing in venues?

Obviously today, the topic of bearing a swastika, whether out of mere rebellious fashion or political means isn't seen as much of a debatable issue. Considering the function and presence of social media, the bands who participated would've been hounded from the get-go, and in retrospect, it really probably was the greatest eblem a movement could bear. There would be a whole lot more social media key board warriors who considered Sid and the gang evil and ignorant for wearing them, than people who would write it off as simply a part of punk culture.The answer however, is not to bring a solution. We need not respond or reflect on the morality. It's just another interesting fact of music culture and beneficial to know the surrounding events to influenced the decision one way or another.













Cover Image Credit: Vice.com

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17 Empowering Bible Verses For Women

You go, girl.
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We all have those days where we let the negative thoughts that we're "not good enough," "not pretty enough" or "not smart enough" invade our minds. It's easy to lose hope in these situations and to feel like it would be easier to just give up. However, the Bible reminds us that these things that we tell ourselves are not true and it gives us the affirmations that we need. Let these verses give you the power and motivation that you're lacking.

1. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future."

2. Psalm 46:5

"God is within her, she will not fall."

3. Luke 1:45

"Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her."

4. Proverbs 31:17

"She is energetic and strong, a hard worker."

5. Psalm 28:7

"The Lord is my strength and my shield."

6. Proverbs 11:16

"A gracious woman gains respect, but ruthless men gain only wealth."

7. Joshua 1:9

"Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."

8. Proverbs 31:30

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised."

9. 1 Corinthians 15:10

"By the grace of God, I am what I am."

10. Proverbs 31:26

"When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness."

11. Psalm 139:14

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

12. 1 Peter 3:3-4

"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."

13. Colossians 2:10

"And in Christ you have been brought to fullness."

14. 2 Timothy 1:7

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."

15. Jeremiah 29:11

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'"

16. Exodus 14:14

"The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm."

17. Song of Songs 4:7

"You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way."

Next time you're feeling discouraged or weak, come back to these verses and use them to give you the strength and power that you need to conquer your battles.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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8 Old Katelyn Tarver Songs You Probably Haven't Heard

None of her new songs will ever go as hard as "Chasing Echoes" and that's a fact.

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Years ago, I found (through iTunes recommendations) a pretty cool female artist. Later found out she was on "Big Time Rush", and then I found out she had some new songs out. I decided to give her new songs a listen, and they're good. However, I prefer some of her older stuff, which sadly isn't on Spotify. Fortunately, YouTube exists, and I'm here to share the best ones.


1. "Wonderful Crazy"

This is just a fun, upbeat song for when you're having a good day. Would recommend playing in your car with the windows rolled down.

2. "Rain"

I have a very specific memory of a time when this song blessed my life, but for all intents and purposes, it is a beautiful and happy song.

3. "I'll Make It Real"

This is a beautiful song with a wonderful message about staying true to yourself. I used to listen to it on the way to school every day my senior year of high school.

4. "Something In Me"

Featured in the greatest show of all time, "South of Nowhere" season 1 episode 6. A very relatable breakup mood.

5. "Love Alone"

This is definitely the second-hardest-hitting song she's ever released. The fact that this is not on Spotify or even iTunes anymore is just not fair.

6. "Favorite Girl"

This one's cute and upbeat, a definite crush mood. Not on the same level as "Love Alone", but it's still underrated.

7. "Closer to My Heart"

Another cute love song. I'll tie it with "Everything" for cutest love song on her first album. Highly recommend both.

8. "Chasing Echoes"

Facts are facts and the facts are that Katelyn Tarver's new stuff could never go as hard as "Chasing Echoes". I can't even begin to explain how deeply these lyrics cut through me when I was fifteen. Even now, this song can take me all the way back. She is robbing us by not making this available on streaming services (or even to purchase). Katelyn, bring this song back, I am begging you.

Anyway, I'm still enjoying the new stuff and am excited to see what's next.

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