Hello there faithful Amp-ers!  I must apologize about the long gap between posts this past month, things just got straight cray cray with finals and moving and working and…well, basically I became quite busy.  But The Amp wasn’t far from my thoughts, don’t worry.  We’re back.

And so, I have for you a troubling new phenomenon that has cropped up in our neighbor to the south, Mexico – Emo hate.  Emo kids have fast become the most-bashed social group in Mexico’s cities, suffering verbal and even physical abuse for their style.  Read on for more on this strange development…

It’s not unusual anymore to see gaggles of dark-clad, skinny adolescents with straightened hair and studded belts cavorting anywhere that loitering is tolerated.  Here in the United States, we’ve been seeing the emo trend, a modern permutation of the goth movement, grow for the better part of a decade, and the fad has become increasingly mainstream.  And whether or not you love them, hate them, emo kids are generally tolerated here.

In Mexico, it’s a completely different story.  Instead of the slow-growing, music-based emo trend that developed here in the U.S., its Mexican counterpart has caught on rapidly, and seems to center largely on fashion.  Super tight jeans, dyed-black and spiky hair, stars, and all of the trappings of emo culture have appealed to a certain group of young people in urban Mexico.  And their peers aren’t looking kindly upon the sudden influx of “emos” into their hang-outs. 

Violence has escalated rapidly in Mexico (see also: here and here for more) where shouting matches have turned into all-out brawls and unprovoked attacks on anyone who even looks emo.  Punks and metalheads, the most agressive anti-emo groups, resent both how quickly the trend has caught on and how eager kids seem to adapt to it on order to fit in.  Fueled by internet message boards full of anti-emo sympathizers, the view of emo style as a means of fitting in, with no real passion or even slight common thread to unite them except fashion.  That sentiment has translated into savage attacks on unarmed (and usually scrawny) emo kids, and high tension in the popular hang-outs of the city.

In response to the escalating hatred, repeated demonstrations for tolerance have taken place in the streets of Mexico City, with emo kids joining forces with gay rights activists and other advocates for groups that are discriminated against.  A police presence has even been required to keep the warring groups apart in some cases, to keep demonstrations from turning into massive street brawls.

Faux hate for the stereotypes of emo culture has become trendy here in the U.S. (“I wish that my grass was emo so that it would cut itself!”), it’s true.  And sure it’s easy to pick on a group that typically tends toward the emotional and wimpy sort.  But what’s happening in Mexico is a completely different scenario: real harm coming upon young kids just because of how they dress.  I think that’s just wrong…and this is coming from the self-proclaimed fashion police.  I’m not going to bust out my liquid eyeliner and arm-warmers in solidarity just yet, but I don’t think emo kids should be whaled upon just for wearing too much black.  It comes down to the age old tradition of jocks beating up wimps…but now there’s fashion at stake.

After that long-winded diatribe on the perils of emo kids, don’t you want to watch a Youtube montage of pictures of Mexican emo kids paired with a song straight out of their scene?  I thought so…