against narratives of necessity

“safe spaces”

from destroy the scene: BROS FALL BACK

Advocates for Youth have defined a “safe space” as:

“A place where anyone can relax and be fully self-expressed, without fear of being made to feel uncomfortable, unwelcome, or unsafe on account of biological sex, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, cultural background, age, or physical or mental ability; a place where the rules guard each person’s self-respect and dignity and strongly encourage everyone to respect others.”

“I think many people who use this language either believe that one can create a safe space in this world, or are limited by the language they have picked up in these subcultures. The need for spaces where one can feel comfort, physical security, love, and support is real, but, outside of specific moments, this is impossible without the total destruction of this world.” –VirulentFlowers

We often delude ourselves as punks or radicals; we act as though we’ve made a complete break with our cultures, as if we’ve created a space free of domination. We seem to think that we can simply walk away and leave it all behind. If we really want to actualize the spaces we want we’ll have to do better than that; we’ll need to burn the bridges behind us.

Safe spaces don’t exist. We can attempt to protect each other, and even make moves to screen who we deal with but until we end the world there’s no way we’ll ever be safe, even amongst ourselves. We’ve all gone to similar messed up schools, grown up among creeps, liars and bullies and we can’t simply undo everything that has led us to become the people we’ve become, not without actively unlearning who we are, and without undoing what made us. This isn’t to say that we shouldn’t take care of each other, heal each other and empower each other, only that we need to understand our context. That we are surrounded by misogyny, white supremacy and every other form of domination that holds this world together. We should probably acknowledge pre-existing hostilities.

Starting from a place of hostility, what would it mean to keep each other safe, to protect each other in our spaces, to hold our ground and potentially take more?

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