Die Young: Fuck The Borders

Die Young (TX) formed in late 2002, and toured extensively until late 2009, when they called it quits. Die Young (TX) has notably released material with A389 Recordings, Eulogy Recordings, and Immigrant Sun Records. Here’s interview with their singer Daniel conducted via email after their show in Sofia.

Hello, could you begin with a short introduction to your band, who are you, where are you from, how long have you been together and did you enjoy your show in Sofia, Bulgaria?

My name is Daniel, also comically known as “The Reverend White Devil” in Die Young. I scream, write the lyrics, and much more for Die Young. Die Young has existed for about 5 and a half years right now. We certainly enjoyed the show in Sofia. There was a great vibe, and seemed like everyone was having fun.

So how it’s going your tour so far?

Haha, well now that I have time to sit down and respond to this interview we’ve been back home for about one month. Overall the European tour went very well, with only a few bad shows or instances of bad luck. We’re just happy we got to go play in so many places in Europe.

On your show you said that the Romanian border police didn’t allow you to enter Romania, so you canceled the show there. What happened on the border?

Four days after we were scheduled to play in Bucharest there was to be a NATO summit, and all the major figureheads of western world power were to be there. Being that Romania is a very new member to the European Union it was obvious that they were beefing up their border security to show that they could handle such responsibilities as hosting an event like the NATO summit. They did not want to risk any unruly types of people getting into the country to stir up protests or resistance to the summit. It was obvious to the border guards that we were some sort of underground band, so they searched all our merch and gear in our van. Then after a couple hours they decided they must take everything into the border station to tear it all apart and take pictures of everything. When I say “everything” I realy do mean EVERYTHING. They took pictures of each page of our personal journals, or they took pictures of each page of zines we had for sale or distro. They took pictures of every shirt, CD, item we had with us. The took us individually into a smoky dim-lit room to ask us questions about the purpose of our travel to Romania, and if we had any plans to be near the summit. After each of us got interviewed they took us up to a room with a big conference table to sit there. A guard stayed with us in the room and would sometimes try to make small talk. We were basically being detained, and it ended up going on for about 4 or 5 hours. All in all, we were at the Romanian border for about 8 hours. It was insane. And they kept telling us that they were holding us there because they were concerned for our safety. They said that fascist groups were rallying in Bucharest because of the summit and that if a band like us showed up to play they would certainly come to our shows to tear the club up and possibly hurt us. To us it just sounded like a bunch of bullshit, and a reason to keep us pacified in that freezing room with nothing to do. After hours passed we decided that there was no end in sight if we were to wait on the Romanian border guards to magically allow us to enter Romania, so we told the guards we were packing our stuff up and going back to Hungary. Legally they could not stop us from doing that, so we just went back to Hungary. On the way out, I said to one of the officials in the office “If you just didn’t want us to come into your country why didn’t you just say so? Now we’ve all just wasted so much time for nothing. We would have preferred to go back to Hungary hours ago.” The man told me that he was sorry, but that they were waiting on a call from Canada. Apparently these guys had gone through our zines in our van and found an interview where we had mentioned being banned from Canada for a year, so these assholes at the Romanian border decided they better doublecheck about that and find out why we got banned. That really confirmed for us that they we were suspicious of us being anarchist types. In all honesty, we did not even know about the summit until a couple days before trying to enter Romania. We just wanted to go to Bucharest and have a fun show and continue or tour, but the paranoid cyborgs at the border just weren’t down for us to have some fun in their country.

Do you know that a couple of days ago a few German activists, who wanted to participate in the anti-NATO protests there were also banned from entering Romania just because the border police found anti-NATO leaflets, T-Shirts and patches in their van? What is your opinion on such kind of fascist methods, used in a society that calls itself “democratic”?

Yes, we had heard about the incident with the German activists, so we made a point to not wear clothes that were overtly vulgar, obscene or of offensive political nature. We just wanted to seem like some normal kids trying to play music, or just like a group of dudes passing through. And you know, in a lot of ways we really are just normal dudes trying to pass through and have fun, but that mattered very little if at all to the border officials, because those assholes tore our van apart and went through all of our belongings. If there is one thing I learned from reading Noam Chomsky early on when I first got interested in what’s happening economically and politically in our world, it’s that whenever some group or government goes around touting slogans about “democracy” or “spreading democracy” you can usually be sure that what they are doing is just the opposite. And I think that holds true when objectively looking at the history of Western power and imperialism. It’s always that some country of tyrannical power tells the world “Hey! we’re going to emancipate these people! We’re going to save them!” That usually means “convert them” or “kill them if they don’t convert.” That’s what is happening in Iraq right now, and that’s what happened in most other wars the USA has ever been involved in. And that’s the kind of mentality that transcends itself all the way down the ladder to the goons who work at borders. The great sickening irony of what happened to us at the Romanian border was that we got treated like terrorists when George Bush and his henchmen were coming to speak at the summit in Bucharest to discuss the idea of the United States setting up more missile launching sights in Eastern Europe. So obviously, who are the real terrorists?

Do you think that Islam radicalism is really a reason for starting a war, or the US government just wants to conquer resources, just like any other “empire”? Do you agree that USA is more or less a modern Roman empire and what kind of future do you see for it?

I think radical Islam and western religions certainly have their conflicts, but those conflicts are nothing new, so obviously it’s not any sort of REAL reason to start another war. At best, it’s bait to lure the public into jingoist hysteria, to make them hate what they don’t really understand, and then consequently support the war. The contrast of Eastern and Western spiritual ideals just make it easy to pit the masses of the East against the West, especially when most people these days are educated by what they see on TV more than anything else. The current war is most definitely a war for dwindling oil resources. We live in the age of peak oil, and the US is the world’s largest oil consumer, so you can bet that the heat is on for the powers that be over here to try and keep our economy afloat. The only way to do that is to secure more oil for future use. Oil is the lifesblood of everything in this economy. My country’s oil addiction dictates absolutely that our government and military must take whatever resources we want by any means necessary so that we can maintain the level of oil consumption we crave. And rest assured that level is always rising. We’re absolutely a modern Roman empire living far past our means. And that’s why we’re an empire in decline.

A couple years ago I heard current presidential nominee John McCain on a talk show telling the audience that America should keep an eye on the hostilities rising in South America with leaders like Hugo Chavez (who also happens to have a ton of oil!) gaining momentum in his bids for seizing more world power via the oil economy and by also rallying other countries against America. McCain basically went on to say that once we get a real grip on the situation in Iraq, we need to go mediate the anti-American situation in South America. He should have just said “When we’re done with Iraq, let’s pack up and go start killing people in Venezuela!” I watched this bullshit and thought to myself “are the people running my country so fucking delusional that they think they can go start a war on every fucking continent?”

You know, at some point your military force is just going to be stretched too thin. But that’s the prevailing mentality of those who run the US government and military, and you know it is true because we stay in some sort of military conflict year after year, just like we have in every year since World War II. It’s funny that you ask about the parallels between the current USA and the Roman empire, because I definitely tried to tie those ideas together with the imagery of our Graven Images album. It has a lot of Christian and Roman imagery involved.

Before one of your songs you said that civilization oppresses us… What is your view on civilization and the perspective of John Zerzan’s ideas about primitivism? Do you think that primitivist views are appropriate and are a real alternative to the capitalist system?

I am actually not familiar with John Zerzan, other than that I have briefly seen columns of his in Green Anarchy, but I don’t read that regularly so that doesn’t mean much. But my general view of civilization is that it is a sinking ship. It is something that currently provides the privileged members of civilized culture (myself included) with great material excesses at the expense of the Earth and all other beings considered below them on the hierarchy of civilization. It is a sinking ship in the sense that it is the mode of living that is currently sustaining us and carrying us through our daily lives, but it is not something that is going to last forever, and in fact, it is something that is crumbling very rapidly due to the human population explosion on this planet and the growing scarcity of resources, primarily oil that the modern world economy depends on so deeply. Because of these things, the shit is going to hit the fan, and at a much greater velocity than most of us are expecting. And consequently, things are going to get dirty, ugly, and smelly. I currently don’t think primitivism is a viable option to resisting the tyranny of civilization. I mean, if a whole bunch of us punks just completely walk away from society and we go live in the forest, or near a beach or river or something, I think that potentially would be a really great thing for all of our lives. If we could voluntarily collectivize and make that happen, and teach other enough about surviving in the wild, things would be very different, and though the struggle to survive would be INTENSE, I do think in some ways we may be at more peace with ourselves and each other in our lives. However, who is going to stop those who do not reject civilization from continuing to contaminate the water supply and the land with radioactive bi-products, or who is going to stop those who continue to create nuclear weapons? If we just walk away from civilization and leave those types to continue to do their dirty work upon this planet, we too will be subject to the consequences of their actions. Unfortunately, we’ve got to keep at least one foot in civilization for the time being so that we can fight those motherfuckers and put an end to their recklessness and exploitation of all living things on this planet. And say we still want to carry out a more primitive way of living after that, we would be helpless when trying to survive then if we did not prepare ourselves to know how to find non-poisonous and edible food, and maybe even cultivate those plants, or hunt, or make shelter in sustainable ways. Those are things I have yet to even teach myself or learn from others. But those are certainly things we all need to prepare ourselves for if we ever want to live in a better, sustainable world.

What ways do you think the Internet changed the radical DIY community and the ways the people communicate?

Of course the internet has made things more accessible to kids in such a way that it has cheapened what it once meant to discover bands and go to shows and make real connections with bands and people at the shows. In a lot of ways the internet has reduced the many dimensions of being emotionally and socially involved in a network of people like the hardcore or punk scene to one simple dimension of kids insulting each other on message boards with little or no accountability for what they are saying or doing. But overall, I think the internet has certainly brought more hardcore kids together from different parts of the world than ever before. Because of the internet we’ve now been able to communicate with promoters on 4 different continents to book shows, and then actually go to different countries to play those shows. I really don’t think any of it could have been possible if the quick communication via internet was not available. As far as the really radical sector, or whatever remains of it in today’s hardcore/punk community, I think the internet has forced radicals to go a bit further underground and off the radar, because the internet makes people so easy to track. And that’s a good thing too, in many ways, because it’s taught some in the more radical kind of sector how to get re-involved with those around us on the flesh and blood level rather, and to make vital and powerful connections that way, rather than just typing to them on some messenger service all night.

What’s your view in CrimethInc. politics of dropping out and all the things they have been doing? Also do you know Brian personally and do bands like Catharsis or Requiem have been an influence to Die Young?

Catharsis records and quite a bit of the Crimethinc publications have been huge influences for my own outlook on living just about ever since I was 18 or 19. That does not mean that I wholly agree, or have ever wholly agreed with everything that Brian and company have published (not that agreeing with him is necessarily the point of what he’s published). Yet, I admire the idealism of it all, and sometimes I can sit down and read an old issue of Inside Front and still get inspired just like I used to. The whole “dropping out” thing appeals to me in many ways, because in a lot of ways it is an admission that we may not be able to change everything we want to change in this world, so we ought to pursue an individual path that we deem worthy of living for. I mean, I am pretty much doing that with Die Young.

We’re not working within the infrastructure to change everything in our fucked up society with this band. We do aim to connect and communicate with people to try and build a community of resistance, but mostly we are aiming for people on the fringes of society so that makes us a little limited in our reach it seems. We’re just doing our own thing and trying to to inspire as much positive change along the way as we can, but we fully realize how limited we are in our grasp of being able to reshape the way things are. I met Brian a few years back when Die Young played with Requiem in our hometown and it was nice to meet him and talk about anything and everything. To me, the life he has lived is a shining example of what one person can do to make their life extraordinary if they only set out to do something extraordinary. He had to “drop out” to do that. So if dropping out of the mainstream completely is what it takes to pull that off then that’s just how it has to be.

Personally, I think this world needs people working both from the inside and the outside of the system because the simple fact is that it is unlikely that the majority of out there who desire change in the world are ever going to be able to fully agree on how to make all those changes happen. We should all pursue our own paths of transformation. For instance, when it comes to radicals doing their own thing–like Brian–I also know many other inspiring people within the hardcore community that have taken what they learned in the radical punk rock underground and they are becoming teachers and professors, lawyers, or they actually get some kind of government job and they try to push for change from the inside. Obviously, that’s not the path I want to take in my life, but I think it is important for those people to take up those positions on the inside nonetheless. For example, a friend of ours in California is under some major scrutiny by local government and the FBI for doing animal rights demonstrations in his area. He has essentially broken no laws at all, and he has not done so because has had the aid of a lawyer friend who supports his cause, and that lawyer offers his services for free to that cause to help my friend find loopholes in local and state laws so that they can protest more effectively. Also, now that our friend is in some hot water with the government, this lawyer friend comes in extra handy to offer his knowledge. It sounds weird for me to say this, but even lawyers can do their part for animal and human liberation! Crazy, huh? haha

I bought your T-Shirt, that says “Set me free from humanity”. What is the message behind it?

That shirt boasts a lyric line from our song “To Forget Civilization” and it’s just a song about being overwhelmed with hopelessness from trying to live in the modern world. It’s not so much that I am a complete misanthrope. Rather, I am just frustrated with modern humanity because of the apathy and complacency that I feel I am surrounded by. I think most people have a lot of good in their hearts that they bury inside themselves to get a paycheck or have a comfortable home. I feel like so much of the way modern man lives is so short-sighted, and I think deep down everyone knows that, yet it seems very few people (when compared to the masses) want to even acknowledge the problems we face in this world, and they choose to carry on in their daily lives with no regard for the big picture, or without any willingness to make simple sacrifices to make a better future. Overall, what the shirt serves to convey is feelings of isolation and despair for knowing what we, as a species, are doing to the planet and to each other.

What kind of alternatives to the present system do you see? Class war, anarcho-syndicalism, Latin America’s socialist states (like Bolivia and Venezuela), primitivism, peoples movements like the Zapatistas or something else?

It’s kind of hard to say what alternatives I think are best because I have not directly been a part of any of the ones you listed, with exception of Die Young functioning as some sort of variation of a modern nomadic tribe. I think me describing our band that way may seem ridiculous to a bunch of people, but I think the analogy works in a lot of ways. After all, we are all bound by a common occupation in which every member does his part, and we all do our part in the group so that we can make a simple and modest living together. We aim to just make enough to survive and we aim to do all this while living as freely from the economic, political, and authoritative restraints of society at large as possible. But yes, there are many potent grassroots resistance groups out there like you mentioned, and there are many alternative ways to coexist with each other, but at best my knowledge of those things is not direct. It has all come reading books or talking to people (such as yourself!) about things going on in the world, so I don’t feel that I am at all qualified to really talk about those alternatives. More-so I would just like to hear other people’s stories about what they have done to break away from the status quo.

All I really know how to do, personally, is just play music, roam around evading authorities, shoplift, and try to get a long with the few people I live with day to day. The many varying ways that different people from different places are able to resist is going to dependent on the variables of where they live like environmental conditions, economic conditions, and so forth. Being that I live in a cultural wasteland of suburban America, there’s little else for me to do but try to take what I need for free or cave in and try to get ahead in this system. Whereas, people like the Zapatistas has a far-less consumer driven society and culture and they are more in touch with their landbase and rich cultural traditions (or so I think anyway), and the ways that they resist state oppression are much different than a privileged nerd such as myself who has grown up in a 5th level economy and very safe (and boring) conditions.

Can you briefly describe what is like to be a part of the Texas hardcore community? Are there many elitist views and attitudes throught the scene and how do you deal with them? Is it the scene divided between the cities or whatever or is there a larger sense of unity? Also do you think there are enough political DIY activities, venues, bands and communities like it used to be?

The story of Texas hardcore, or my generation of it anyway, began sometime in 1998 with just a couple of bands starting up in the Houston area. Surely, Texas has a rich tradition of hardcore and punk stemming from the 1980’s but I was just born then so I won’t try to act like I know much about all that. Over the past ten years I have seen the Texas hardcore community grow in a lot of good ways and even more bad ways, I am sad to report. Ten years ago social and political activism was synonymous with being involved in the Texas scene, as most kids were deeply connected to the animal rights community, and most of the subject matter put forth by bands was at least a sincere attempt at making people aware about something or connected with each other. That’s what I think anyway. Today there are many many bands, and many of them are great, but the hardcore scene here now is more of just a social clique based around music with no apparent progressive direction or consciousness. But that’s how it is just about everywhere in the US with few exceptions. Hardcore has been watered down to become music that is just there for us to mosh to.

The scene here is somewhat divided between cities, but there is a sense of unity too, I believe. I think most kids here in Texas are really proud of the scene and bands we have, and that is evident in every Texas city you go to. For example, there are a couple hardcore fests thrown in various cities every year that draw kids from all over the state (and even out of state sometimes now which is really cool), and those shows are almost always the best shows of the year.

What’s the worst thing about the present day hardcore scene in the USA your opinion? Is it the Christian hardcore, sexism, homophobia, macho attitudes, commercialism, etc.?

It seems there is still a lot of violence and intolerance between the different cliques within the scene. Yeah, there is still a fair amount of violence, but in some ways I think it has always been there. I mean, if you read any books like American Hardcore or All Ages, people like Ian MacKaye and Henry Rollins make it seem totally commonplace for violence to be a part of what went on in the scene back then. Older friends I have around the country who have been around since maybe the late 80’s or early to mid 90’s will tell you the same thing: there is always some stupid drama that brings violence into the fold. Although I may believe them, it doesn’t make me think the violence I have seen at shows in recent years is any less stupid or self-defeating. I guess too many of these pissed off dudes don’t know how to vent all their frustrations than to fight each other. I don’t know.

Ultimately though, I think the worst thing about the greater scene of the US right now is this bandwagon disinterest for bands who try to raise any sort of real conscious or discussion about topics beyond friends, the scene, and personal problems. Yeh those things have their place in hardcore, for sure, but a lot of bands are getting away with this awful brand of self-hatred put into lyric form. They try to pass it off as poetic or something, and the drones in the scene eat it up. It baffles me really. All they sing about is being down on themselves and being an emotional wreck, or something silly that would perhaps be cool in one song, but these bands make an entire career out of it.

There’s a lot of awful mindless trends going on, like how a lot of bands want to sound like every NYHC crossover band’s worst record from the late 80’s or early 90’s. It’s all very contrived and therefore pretty despicable. You know, all I want to see is some genuine emotion brought to the table sometimes. A little global or communal consciousness wouldn’t hurt either. Most of these kids are so self-absorbed in their suburban melodramas, and their poseur crew rivalries that they fail to see any sort of big picture or lasting value of what can hardcore and punk rock can really offer them. Basically, things are too big and too commercial for their own good. I’m not sure of who to be mad at sometimes, the kids or the businesses running things from the background, or both, but the bottom line is the prevailing mentality within the general scene has become more complacent and more like the mainstream. I sincerely hope that mentality does not infect the scenes outside of North America. Perhaps it already has in some ways, but I hope kids in Bulgaria, for example, can possibly see through those shallow facades and make their own incredible and potent communities.

What do you think about the mass commodification of the term Straight Edge that have nothing to do with the DIY milleu and there are so many non-political elitist hardcore kids out there wearing Nike and drinking Coke? What is the meaning you personally put in the term Straight Edge and is it really important to call yourself with that term?

Well when it comes to any sort of label, even Straight Edge, I think a herd mentality eventually builds itself around the label. That has certainly happened with Straight Edge. Sure, there are still many people who value Straight Edge as a sort of clear path to maintain a revolutionary consciousness and fight for change in the world, and I will always applaud them and seek them out in my personal life, but for most Straight Edge has certainly become a commodified term that they claim for a couple years and then discard at their leisure when their friends think it is time for them to “outgrow the trend” and “grow up.” Either way, I don’t really care. People do what people do, and it is usually no surprise when they change faces. As with any term or label, I don’t think it is important for me to call myself Straight Edge anymore, even though I still am (have been for over 10 years). It’s just kind of irrelevant at this point, especially since I think Straight Edge kids have certainly done the most to tarnish the name Straight Edge by simply being elitist or just as dumb as anyone else.

One thing in particular that I don’t understand is Straight Edge kids who eat meat/fast food and drink soda regularly. Poison Free huh? Yeh fucking right. Consuming that shit is more poisonous to yourself and the earth than smoking weed on a casual basis, I promise.

Anyway, back to my point–I do what I do and I live how I live for myself, and there’s not really any label that can peg me for who I am, so why bother? And why would I want to purposely associate myself with such a diluted group of people who have now become a sad shadow of the movement’s original intentions? I don’t completely intend spit on the modern Straight Edge scene, I am just at odds with it. I just wish more kids today could embrace it in the way bands like Minor Threat or Trial promoted Straight Edge: using that clarity of mind to be unhindered in a struggle to transform society for the better.

Are you all vegans and do you think speaking of veganism is so important issue in our hardcore/punk community?

We are not all vegans. We are not all vegetarians either. We have changed members a lot since our inception in 2002, and there have certainly been times when we were all at least vegetarian, or times that at least the majority of us were vegan, but I am currently the only vegan. I use my status as the band’s booking agent to make sure the dudes always have to eat the vegan food I request from the promoters haha. They don’t mind. They have all learned to like vegan fare, even if they swear they could never go vegan. However, I have never been able to make veganism a prominent issue in Die Young simply because this band has never been about claiming a specific platform because we have always had members who share different beliefs from the others. Our association with the vegan hardcore movement has always been because of me and our friendships with bands like 7 Generations, Gather, Kingdom, and so on. I think veganism is a very important issue today’s hardcore scene, and I think it always should be no matter how much kids may neglect it or make fun of it, because veganism, to me, is one of the only earth-responsible choices each of us can make in this ugly, destructive civilization that treats nature and the lives of other species as mere resources. I don’t think enough people will ever adhere to veganism for us to solve the pollution and dwindling bio-diversity problems caused by civilization, but I think it’s an admirable decision each person can make to show that they value the lives of other species, and to show that they value the life of the planet that animal agriculture is killing so vastly with its high quantities of air, land, and water pollution. It’s not about liking the taste of meat or not. It’s about asking yourself what is necessary for our planet at this exact moment in our human story.

There is a lot of state repression towards the ALF and ELF activists in the United States. Could you give us a more insight into the Green Scare term as I think a lot of people here in Eastern Europe know not so much about it? Also how can we close the gaps that exist between the different activist cliques, I think for example the SHAC7 process is a good example of community between the different activist groups because it’s not only about animal rights activists but about state repressions, interception of the free speech and human rights violation in one post-9. 11 America?

The term “Green Scare” is a play on words from the original term “Red Scare” which was coined by a United States senator back in the 1950s when the Cold War era began and the United States government was doing its best to find all communists living in America, as well as promote hysteria and hatred against communists to fuel the Cold War effort. The current hysteria created by the US government is mainly against Islam and so-called “eco-terrorists” (for whom the term Green Scare directly applies). Animal and Earth liberation activists have been targeted by the US government because they are believed to pose the greatest threats to industrial agriculture and animal exploitation businesses of all kinds. You are absolutely right on about the SHAC 7 case because it does span so many different issues, like free speech, animal rights, corporate power, and much more. I’ve been hoping that by speaking or writing about the SHAC case more people would make the link about free speech and animal rights or vice versa, but a lot of my close friends even seem to be reluctant to look deeper at the animal rights side of the argument. For the most part, it’s only been animal rights advocates coming to the aid of SHAC. Quite honestly, I am not too sure about how to bridge the gaps within different activist communities at the moment. 16. Do any of you do any animal rights related work outside of the band? Yes, at times.

As a vegan what do you think about the issue of abortion? Could you openly discuss this issue?

I assume that you are implying that many people feel that supporting a woman’s right to have an abortion of a human fetus while insisting on a better quality of life for animals is an inconsistent outlook. Many people feel that upholding the sanctity of animal life as an absolute while not upholding the sanctity of all human life is ridiculous. But for me, personally, I’ve got to say I don’t necessarily believe in the total sanctity of animal life either. By that I mean that all things have to consume other things to live–meaning things must die so that other things can live. I believe we are ALL part of a food chain, but we are all currently part of a system called civilization that leads us to believe that we are separate from the food chain. When civilization collapses we will all be part of a food chain again, and that means animals will have to be eaten. Even then, I do not and will not believe in being cruel to animals, because I also believe in mercy, but that doesn’t mean animals can’t or won’t be eaten. The cruelty of killing one wild animal with your hands, or a spear, or a small weapon is nothing compared to the widespread cruelty of factory farms which operate in such a way that regards animals’ lives as meaningless. Factory farms and the economic system that spawned them could not function without that basic premise–the premise that allows us to view living things as meaningless non-miracles. But likewise I don’t believe in being cruel to humans either. And I don’t feel that it is cruel to abort a human fetus precisely because they are certainly circumstances of modern living that are indeed fates worse than death (such as being born into abject poverty, or being born to unloving parents who are drug addicts, or being born to a parent or parents who simply cannot provide for their children). In such cases I think it would be an act of mercy to abort a fetus. You know, life is hard enough when living in a privileged society and having love in your life. I can’t imagine living a life depraved of love and comfort. If I was a fetus about to being born into a grimly undesirable situation I genuinely feel that it’d be best to have the mental faculties to be able to choose to not be born so that I could spare myself the pain of human consciousness outside of the womb. I’d commit fetal suicide! haha.

I bet some people think that is an awful way to look at living, but I think those people clearly are not thinking about a world of nearly 7 billion people subsisting on a declining oil economy, nor are they thinking of the nasty future in store for this planet ecologically. In fact, they are probably those same people out there who do not make the distinct connection that what we do to the planet for industrial “progress” is going to haunt all of us soon enough (if not already). Some people think that abortion sets a bad precedent for how people ought to regard human life, but I’ve got to tell you that is rare to see pro-life activists out there doing anything other harassing women coming out of Planned Parenthood clinics or plastering their car bumpers with SHITTY bumperstickers, so I’m not surprised that they constantly fail to grasp any perspective of life on planet Earth other than that of “Humans first! What about the humans? Save the humans!” Truly, what a bunch of narrow-minded idiots. They need to be eradicated. If only they had been aborted! In all seriousness though, no one likes to have an abortion. I would never wish that upon a woman. The bottom line is that it ought to be her choice, because that’s not a physical or emotional pain I would have to endure directly since I am a man. I would hope that abortions can be avoided as much as possible, but in a world such as this, it is also necessary that it remains an option for considerations of mercy to both woman and fetus.

Some words to end this interview, maybe some positive message to the kids who are reading this.

It’s true that if you fight hard enough against the ruling order of this world hope is bound to leave you. But if you have enough love in your heart–for life, for the planet, for yourself and those close to you–then you will find the strength to keep fighting. As much as I have felt that hatred has often guided my writing or activities in Die Young, I cannot deny that it has been a passion and love for a sense of “living” (in the romantic sense of the word) that has kept me going when I have felt that all hope is lost. The masses are going to fail us. Governments are going to fail us. It’s up to us–you and me–to do what is necessary to make changes happen. We will only be able to face those enormous fears instilled in us by our great opposition if we have enough love in our hearts to do so.

Mittens XVX

Positive person bringing a small fragment of warmth and light in a dark and cold world. Editor of Tigersuit Zine. Founder of DIY Conspiracy webzine. Contact him at: mitkoxvx@gmail.com