Date posted: February 26, 2013
Not everyone looks good in pink. But masses of people, all wearing pink, can send a powerful statement.
A few years ago, a couple of Canadian teens noticed a 9th grader was being bullied because he wore a pink shirt and, ergo thought the bullies, he was gay. The teens decided to do something about it, to no longer be bystanders but to become “upstanders.” They purchased 50 pink tank tops and, the next morning, handed them out to friends at school. A sea of pink shirts met the bullied child as he arrived that morning and not only changed his life, but also changed the school’s climate.
Pink Shirt Day became an annual even that spread from that school throughout Canada and is now going worldwide. Many US schools and communities are participating this year tomorrow, February 27th.
It’s important to note that one event, one assembly, or one lesson will not typically change behaviors. What happened at that Canadian high school was the result of a set of circumstances that aren’t often repeated. However, there is great value in these kinds of events for raising awareness and kick-starting a longer, deeper conversation about bullying and school climate.
So go ahead and get your pink on. And then buckle down to the hard work of really changing behaviors, attitudes and school culture. Learn more in Cable in the Classroom’s Digital Citizenship web pages.
Image: Anti-Bullying Flashmob, January 2011 You Tube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MhYyAa0VnyY