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Straight Edge movement

Adherents of the Straight Edge (often referred to in print as "sXe") movement, an offshoot of the punk subculture, focus on gaining as much personal control over their lives as possible. The Straight Edge movement discourages drug and alcohol use and casual sex; it also advocates vegetarianism.

According to a Straight Edge Web site, the movement "wishes to attract people away from dependancy [sic] lifestyles centered around drug habits (legal or illegal) and unhealthy and exploitative eating and general living habits common in modern cultures."

The symbol of Straight Edgers, an "X," originated from the practice at punk shows of marking underage attendees with an "Xí on their hands so that they couldnít buy alcohol. Later on, people in the Straight Edge movement who were able to drink, but didnít for ideological reasons, marked themselves with an "X" to show solidarity. Many followers of the Straight Edge movement sport "Triple X" tattoos.

Even though Straight Edge adherents share a basic lifestyle of abstention from drugs, alcohol, and casual sex, as well as other cultural commonalities ranging from music to dress, their political ideology can range from the far right to the far left. The movement draws a variety of young people from anarchists to neo-Nazis to radical animal rights activists. Some come to the movement because of their religious philosophy while others may have been drawn to it through the rejection of drug and alcohol abuse in their families.

Many Straight Edgers display intolerance for those who do not agree with their philosophy; some Straight Edgers have been involved in violent crimes from assaults to alleged attacks on fast food restaurants and businesses that sell leather or fur. However, many in the movement deplore violence as counter to the values of the movement.

In This Report
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White Order of Thule
Outlaw Hammerskins
Straight Edge movement
World Church of the Creator, The Womenís Frontier, The Sisterhood
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