Punk taught us to rebel against authority until "authority" included everything: piano lessons, fire insurance, leather shoes, and, ultimately, growing up. Punk taught us to have contempt for every institution, except Fugazi, until contempt and suspicion were the first and only reactions we had to everything. Good news was embarrassing, success was shameful, and a happy childhood an unthinkable transgression. These personality disorders were just punk in practice.
It's time we stopped disavowing happiness and measured pride, we punk survivors, wrapping ourselves in itchy thrift-store horse blankets thinking that only discomfort is honest. It's time we stopped hating ourselves, our ambition, and our sincerity, guarding our integrity credentials in fear of interrogation by the secret punk police. It's time to unmask punk rock, admit that it has done us no favors, and banish it from our minds. There is no one waiting for us at the gates of heaven with a big book of punk, ready to judge our souls and validate our credibility. Punk rock is bullshit, and was always bullshit. Say it with me.