We’re well impressed by the work Emma from Hotwired is doing to raise awareness of the crazy shit that is happening to punks in Indonesia.
Back in December a group of punks in the ultra-conservative Aceh province were rounded up, arrested and forced onto a programme of ‘re-education’. They were stripped of their punk clothing and piercings and their hair was shaved off.
It was the latest effort by authorities to promote strict moral values in an area where adultery is punishable by stoning to death, gay people have been thrown in jail or lashed in public and women must wear head scarves.
In solidarity with the Indonesian punks, Emma is organising Punk is not a Crime Fest in Norwich on Friday 8th and Saturday 9th June. She’s hoping to raise enough money to bring the Indonesian band Dislaw over for a UK tour.
Meanwhile, in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta, punk band Marjinal are helping street kids to survive by teaching them ukulele so they can busk for a living. The band give free music lessons and art workshops to the kids and offer their music and artwork to reproduce and sell.
So why, in a country where punks have proved themselves to be compassionate, creative and resourceful members of the community, are some of them being treated like criminals and forced into ‘spiritual cleansing’?
Electric Ukulele Land are looking at ways of raising cash so Marjinal can continue their amazing work. And we hope lots of you will support Emma’s efforts by getting over to Norwich for Punk is not a Crime Fest. There are other bands and promoters around the UK organising fundraising events too. Punks unite!
PUNK IS NOT A CRIME FEST – KING EDWARD VII, AYLSHAM ROAD, Norwich, Friday 8th and Saturday 9th June 2012.