Driver Pushes Goth Kids Off the Bus

WEST YORKSHIRE, England – Tasha wears a collar with a leash that her fiance Dani holds when they are out walking together. For this reason, a bus driver has denied them service, saying “no dogs allowed” – and allegedly pushed them off the bus.

It’s ironic that same land that gave us Siouxsie and Fat Bob is now one of the most dangerous, discriminatory European places for goths to inhabit. Last year, 20-year-old goth girl Sophie Lancaster was beaten to death for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, wearing the wrong clothes. A goth guy collecting charity while dressed as Nosferatu was violently beaten by a group of up to seven, his prosthetic ears ripped off. These attacks, perpetuated by yobs and/or chavs, are one thing, but this kind of treatment by a public servant is something else entirely.

The story was covered by The Daily Mail, England’s more conservative, right-wing newspaper. Some of the reader comments are rather hilarious. Here are my top 3 favorites, for various reasons:

He looks like a work-shy scrounger to me, get a job and pay your way.
– Harry Basset, Whitby

Never mind walking the dog – with a figure like Tasha’s she’ll soon be on the catwalk.
– Sarah, Belgium

If he was a gentleman goth, he would loan her his coat.
– John, United Kingdom

Though I’m 100% with them, the couple gets points taken off for giving stupid quotes to the media. Don’t say “I am a pet” to a reporter for a mainstream news outlet. Just don’t. (Thanks, Catwalk Ghost!)

25 Responses to “Driver Pushes Goth Kids Off the Bus”

  1. DJ Velveteen Says:

    …and they’re even hot goths! What’s the world coming to…?!

  2. James Shearhart Says:

    Hey, whoa, wait a minute: Quote from the Lancaster piece –
    “Her boyfriend, Robert Maltby, 21, was also left in a coma….”

    Quote from the bus piece –
    “Tasha Maltby is used to odd looks and even odder remarks.”

    The family seems to be a lightning rod for thuggery….

    Me, I always carry a heavy walking stick or a sheathed dagger whenever I get dressed up and know I have to spend extended periods of time in the unwashed masses….

  3. Nadya Says:

    James, I noticed that they have the same last name too, but assumed that it was just a coincidence. This couple is from Yorkshire, and the other one was from Lancashire, which is a different region.

  4. Milly von Hilly Says:

    I strongly believe goths should be able to ride the bus, I just don’t think they should be able to sit in the front of it or drink from the same water fountains.

  5. sbj Says:

    us yorkshire lasses are h.a.r.d
    we don’t need no bleedin’ coats.

    just kidding *grabs mittens*

    you see kids everywhere round these parts..pissed in the snow. mental.

  6. Porphyria Says:


    It doesn’t really help matters. Things are getting worse, around here at least. I’m still in shock after the Sophie incident, for something so awful to happen so close really hits home.

  7. Tequila Says:

    This hurts my head…what exactly is going on in the land of little sunshine that has so many so anti-goth?

  8. lise Says:

    “These attacks, perpetuated by yobs and/or chavs, are one thing, but this kind of treatment by a public servant is something else entirely.”

    I don’t think it’s at all right to almost _permit_ those particular two groups to mistreat others just because they’re human trash. It’s like morally pardoning Southern hicks for assaulting and harassing gays and blacks. Human trash is still human and therefore just as accountable as any other human group. Ignorance and worthlessness is not an excuse. I trust you weren’t implying that, but still… it needed to be said.

    On a far less serious note, _damn_ he is quite a piece. ;p

  9. Red Scharlach Says:

    I’m not sure I like how you seem to hold “goth” up as a special, discriminated term, but have no problem using “yobs” and “chavs”.

    That and, calling the driver “a fascist pig?” Hardly original. I doubt he even understands the meaning of the term.

    All in all: “Oh no! Those poor non-conformists!”

  10. Cotton Says:

    I was always taught that you don’t get a pet until you can afford to take care of one by yourself.

  11. Io Says:

    While I’m outraged by the bus driver’s ridiculous (and immature) treatment (and to say nothing of the incidents of violence), I’m also ashamed when people so poorly represent the subculture. To me, leashes for shock value should be the sole domain of 14-year-old Mansonite mall rats. Ditto fir the silly quotes.

    Being in the unique position of both working for the mainstream media and being part of the subculture, I’m deeply frustrated when I see people doing NOTHING to improve their public image. I always get the “Well, I don’t give a fuck what the public thinks about me,” but it holds no weight.

    As long as we have to live, work, and survive within our parent culture, we need to pay attention to how we portray ourselves lest we be exposed to only more ridicule/hatred/misunderstanding. I’d like to think that because I’ve kept this in mind, it is the reason why I’ve been successful in both the “normal” and subcultural aspects of my life.

  12. Laura Gardner Says:

    Haha, yes i saw this story, i think the bus driver must be crazy to discriminate in the nanny state that we have now, surely his ass will be fired.

  13. Human pet - Says:

    […] [via] […]

  14. ampersandpilcrow Says:

    I’m not surprised. Though the bus driver should have just taken their money and gone about his day, when you publicly break taboos, occasional things of this sort are probably to be expected. Being prepared for them is not a bad idea, just like carrying a knife if you’re going to be running around late at night dressed up and by yourself.

    A better response would have been to calmly state their right to ride. Then, if still refused and pushed off, make a complaint, get some media attention and solve the matter.

    The “fascist pig” namecalling didn’t do much to help their case (now if the bus driver had tried to shoot them, that would have been fascist).

    I work in the (more or less) mainstream media and overlap with the goth subculture. From that standpoint Maltby should have stuck with the “it’s my choice” and left out the “I’m a pet” stuff. It would have induced a lot less of a groan.

    That said, I don’t think they have some moral duty to be good subcultural citizens. Subcultures will always be judged in the popular mind by their most outrageous denizens and if these two want to play human pet in public, it really doesn’t bother me.

    Ironically, I live in a medium-sized city in the American South and at least once every two months, will see someone walking down the street on a leash. No one’s batted an eye.

  15. Mer Says:

    Ampers, are you in Atlanta, by any chance?
    I admit it, I often point and laugh at humans on leashes in public places.
    Granted, they’re usually shrieking toddlers (always funny), but… yeah.

  16. ampersandpilcrow Says:

    Mer, nah I’m in Asheville. Which is just weird enough that it might actually be more tolerant of leashed (non-toddler) humans.

    Once was in a mall and the girl was also wearing a medical mask. THAT was funny. Shrieking children are pretty damn amusing period.

  17. Silent Says:

    “Attention seekers get attention, and then cry that it’s the wrong kind.”

    These two have probably just created far more anti-goth sentiment in the UK than any actual chavs could have. Most of my friends want to batter them, and we’re supposedly in the same subculture.

  18. kris_ether Says:

    Oh it gets worse. These idiot attention seekers go to the most unbiased of tabloids ‘the Sun’ and come out with this madness.

  19. Mer Says:

    Have you ever laughed and vomited at the same time?

  20. Red Scharlach Says:

    Oh Lord.

    You could have found better for your fifteen minutes of fame, guys.

  21. ampersandpilcrow Says:


    “We were so oppressed we just had to go to the tabloids.”

  22. Lady Julianne le Fay Says:

    Oh my Cod, I was on the train yesterday and I looked down at the newspaper of the person sitting down next to wear I was standing. They were reading that article in The Sun. I read the headline and physically cringed, I felt myself flinch and my eyes went huge. I think the person reading it noticed because they moved their arms so that the paper was half closed and others would find it harder to see which article they were reading.

    If you’re wanting a sympathetic reception, the worst place you could do is The Sun.

  23. Lady Julianne le Fay Says:

    I apologise for the number of typos in the above post. Where, not wear. Go, not “do”. Argh.

  24. Io Says:

    Ampers, you may know my husband (DJ Triskyl) and me. We get up there now and again, and this fall he Deejayed at the goth night there.

    That said, I don’t think it’s a moral duty to positively represent the subculture, but in my experience, that can help in terms of living a normal and productive public life in mainstream society. For me, it’s a sort of have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too situation.

  25. ampersandpilcrow Says:

    Io, I think I’ve been introduced to the both of you before, though my memory is kinda cloudy (as it is with most things involving Joli Rouge).

    I would agree about living a productive life in mainstream society, mainly because I’d encourage just about anyone to find a way to make their talents work and contribute something. That’s the route I’ve chosen too. Unfortunately, I think by nature the attention will tend to go to the most extreme members of a subculture, even if they’re the minority.

    I’ve encountered a similar thing with hippies in Asheville. There’s plenty of them that have jobs, own and run businesses well, etc. But those aren’t the ones that get the attention.