(Weedsteeler Europe) – Police officers in Armenia, a former republic of the Soviet Union, have begun cracking down on the epidemic of angst-ridden punk-rock commonly referred to as “emo“. The music has been deemed a threat to young people’s welfare and “our gene pool”, said Armenian Chief of Police Alik Sarkisian.
Efforts have been made to set up surveillance and single out “emos” in schools and popular gathering places in order to detain and question the youths. These efforts came shortly after two teenagers rumored to be emo fans committed suicide in the Armenian capital of Yerevan. The gloomy lyrics of emo have no doubt increased the likelihood of teenagers harming themselves or attempting suicide.
Authorities in Yerevan have called for a complete ban of the unconventional style, which allows youth to stand out from the masses and embrace Western culture. The anti-emo campaign has caused many followers to dress in disguise to avoid beatings and other forms of harassment.
There have been reports of raids on the homes of suspected emo fans, including that of a 13 year old girl. Her computer was searched, but it is not clear whether there was substantial evidence for any sort of official conviction.
Some may peg the behavior of the Government as a human rights violation or a return to Soviet repression, but police say they are merely protecting the youth.