About this whole safety-pin campaign, inspiring people wear a visible safety-pin in solidarity with groups (too many to list) threatened by the sexual-predator-elect.
I ain’t gonna lie, I kinda like it. But then again, I’m only a cis-non-religious-middle-aged-slightly-overweight-white-woman, not as nearly targeted as the vast marginalized populations on Trump’s you’re-not-like-me hit list.
The safety-pin takes guess-work out of who is on the side of human decency. Instead of wondering if they voted for hate, people know at the sight of the pin, they (most likely) did not.
The goal is to offer solidarity to disenfranchised groups affected by the sexual predator elect (too many to list), so they know by the sight of a safety-pin, they have a supportive friend nearby. Like seeing a Yankee jersey at Fenway. Or a Bills jersey anywhere. (ouch)
The thing is, black people have been wondering this their whole lives, who’s the racist and who isn’t – with no safety pin for easy identification. Take a listen to writer Amber Ruffin as she breaks it down for ya’ll:
Rightfully so, there is a well-deserved backlash from many people of color (POC) outraged that white folks think wearing a little safety-pin will fix things.
“Ally theater,” is acting like you care with a small inconsequential act that makes you feel good, without having to really do anything. We see it all the time: well-meaning people doing what’s right for the virtual audience, for social causes trending, for the mass shooting du jour, but behind the screen, off-line, in real life where actions really matter, the contribution is – um, nil.
The safety-pin movement has all the signs of “ally theater,” judging from my predominantly white thread of Facebook friends, all to eager to don the pin. To make a difference. To be a friend. Friends of color are leery, with good reason, considering this yet another way of allowing white people to feel like they are doing something without having to do anything at all.
And they would be right.
Changing a profile pic in wake of a tragedy is something, but is it nearly enough when there is so much at risk?
Maybe instead, we could pick up the phone and call Congress or a local representative and demanding human rights, or donating to a worthy related cause, or, I dunno, call me crazy, voting to keep scum out of the White House.
A safety-pin doesn’t do those things.
But that’s not its job.
A safety-pin pieces together something that would otherwise fall apart, temporarily, until a more permanent solution can be found.
So I say wear the pin. But I’m a white woman.
But a white woman with a blog so here goes it:
To wear the safety-pin or not to wear the pin: that is the question
- Don’t assume those who wear safety pins in a sign of solidarity to at-risk, disenfranchised people in the new Trump regime make the pin their only commitment to eradicating racism and [insert atrocity here]-ism.
- And people, especially us white people, don’t think wearing the safety-pin is the only thing you should be doing. Let it be part of your effort, not your only effort.
There’s work to be done if we’re to stitch together the fabric of our country in a desperate hope to keep it from unraveling from the White House down.