Safe Spaces in Punk Scenes

By Shawna Potter for Noisey

The Vans Warped Tour was created in 1995 by Kevin Lyman, a lifelong punk, as a place for outcasts to enjoy the music they like, together, but it's developed a stigma over the years. Recent high-profile stories of male performers on the long-running traveling music festival engaging in sexually aggressive behavior towards female fans, and specifically minors, have cast it as something of an incubator for predatory band creeps. So it came as something of a surprise when Kevin and the Warped Tour team offered my band, War On Women, a feminist punk band that has stood for spreading and promoting safer spaces, a spot on this year's lineup. But that's exactly why we accepted the offer.

War on Women's Shawna Potter didn't come for the bullshit, she came to party and she's going to make sure other women, queer folkes, and people of color who attend, work, and peform at Warped Tour feel the same way.