Attending My First Skinhead Event
Article By Adrian Cintas
Born in the 50’s from the poor subcultures of Jamaican rude boys and British blue-collar youth, skinheads have found a place all across the globe. As the economic climate worsened in the late 70’s and 80’s, skinheads caught a poor reputation, often being portrayed as racists or far right extremists. However, this could not be further from the truth as traditional skinheads often identified as apolitical or independent, and only sought to embrace their working-class roots, regardless of race. Skinheads of both types would often violently clash at concerts and in the streets, sometimes leading to riots. In late 80’s, many skinheads sought to take back their traditional roots in response to the racially charged rep they had received. The result was the creation of groups such as S.H.A.R.P. (Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice) and R.A.S.H. (Red and Anarchist Skinheads). These anti-fascist and anti-racist groups continue to organize events and distribute info.
Given the resurgence of a more overtly racist and nationalistic tone in our current political climate, many of these groups have sought to raise their voices to combat such issues. Most recently, R.A.S.H. NW organized their 2nd Rock Against Fascism event in Portland, Oregon at Cider Riot! The event featured anti-fascist Oi, Punk, and Hardcore from bands like The Brass, Petite, Empire Justice, and Violent Traditions. These bands continue to push the subculture’s original attitude that people from every background should have the right to pursue the enjoyment of life, clothing, and music!