I was reluctant to write this post as I feel like I had already covered it in my previous post The Downfall of The Pit. However, towards the end of last month a 22 year old girl, Emily Hoffman, left a Code Orange gig unconscious and with a broken jaw that needed six hours of reconstructive surgery to fix.
If you aren’t apart of the hardcore scene, or really pay much attention to the heavy music scene in general then you may think the two acts are the same. Here’s the difference. I have never had a problem with hardcore dancing. Everyone has their own space within the pit to throw down to their hearts content. Two stepping, spin kicking and punching away invisible bees is part of the thrill of attending a hardcore gig. It is a fantastic way to let yourself go. Most people make sure they have some space before going all out. So don’t worry fans of this style of moshing, I defended it before and I’ll defend it some more. We’re cool all you hardcore dancers out there, it’s crowd killing I have always had a problem with.
‘Crowd killing’ is all about going out of your way to physically harm others. I mean, I have left gigs with bumps and bruises. Getting accidently hit in the pit is bound to happen, but this is different. Lining up people along the edge of the pit and just physically assaulting them is fucking idiotic. And, yes that is what you are doing, it is common assault. You wouldn’t get away with it anywhere else so why think it is acceptable at a gig? To all those people spouting nonce about it ‘being a part of the scene’ or ‘that’s what you get for standing at the side of a pit’ can fuck off. Like right off. Just because you want to act like a try hard tough guy doesn’t mean you can lash out at people who are there to enjoy the music. It goes against the very spirit of what hardcore is all about.
Back to the incident at hand. There has been conflicting accounts about what really went down. But according to Emily she was spin kicked in the face by some guy wearing steel toe capped boots. Now let’s analyse this. Firstly, I should never hear the words spin kick and steel toe in the same sentence. If you know you are going to be spin kicking at a gig, just put on some canvas trainers or something. You know like a normal person would. Now if it was genuinely an accident, then why the steel toed boots?. It has been fantastic to see Code Orange and many fans coming out in support. It shows that the spirit of the scene is still there and people are beginning to wise up to those few who seek to ruin it.
Now like I said there has been several accounts of what happened from people across various internet outlets but it’s the internet. Who knows what to believe. Some say there was no steel toed boots involved. One person who claimed to have been at the show said she was crowd killing as well as. Whatever you believed happened I think we can all agree no matter how ‘hard’ the genre of music is or how rough the pit gets, no one should ever have to leave a gig like Emily.
You can read Emily’s story and help her out with the rising medical bill over on her gofundme page: https://www.gofundme.com/3b5g5ew
If you are to take one thing from this tale it should be this. Crowd Killing needs to go! It needs to just bugger off for good.