Democracy is pretty cool. It’s a system that values the collective opinion of the people. Be it a presidential election or a reader’s poll for an independent arts newspaper, the results of democratic elections can reveal a lot. Sometimes, these results can expose huge problems with the voting process. Remember the 2000 presidential elections which brought up so many concerns about the voting machines and the counting process? The 2000 elections also revealed a lot about the voters themselves, many of whom clearly did not have all the facts about their candidate of choice.
Some of the winners on this year’s NUVO’s Best of Indy reader’s poll revealed a lot about the voters and the candidates: Either the readers are very confused, or the voting system was hacked. The Mouse Trap won for best hipster bar, but that must be because the voters confused “hippies” with “hipsters”. There were a few more dubious winners on the list (don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of Yats, but they only have three vegetarian dishes, only one of which is vegan, which is surprising considering that they won for Best Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurant), but no result was more confusing than Zero Boys winning the coveted “Best Punk/Hardcore Group/Artist” award.
Sure, Zero Boys were an extremely important band in the history of Indianapolis. They were our city's link to the early punk movement but there is no reason for them to be winning any awards for anything in the year 2010. They haven’t even played a show yet this year, let alone released any new material.
- Full Rainbow: They weren't even alive in '82, but they're kicking and screaming in '10
Why Zero Boys? There are some really good Punk/Hardcore groups in this town that play dozens of shows a year at bars, in basements and even in clubs and theaters. Full Rainbow (formerly Sorely Trying Days), Sex Before Marriage, Vital Error, What Lurks and Stand and Deliver (who actually made the list at #3) are all living, breathing, sweating punk bands that keep the local scene alive in this town. They aren’t resting on laurels. They don’t have $3,000 dollar guarantees. They just want to play punk rock in Indianapolis and have a good time. They all sound like perfect candidates for
Perhaps the average NUVO reader doesn’t give a rat’s ass about punk (let alone local punk) but that is no reason to vote a band as inactive as Zero Boys to the top of the local punk ladder. Maybe Indianapolis needs to make more of an effort to get to know its local punk scene. Maybe the punk scene needs to reach out more to the city and break out of the punk ghetto. But one thing's for sure: if you're going to vote for anything, please get your facts straight before you cast your ballot.