This is (hopefully) a quick post about why I’m wearing purple today. (And, no, my son is wrong–it’s NOT pink!) I tend to keep this blog pretty non-political, ditto with a lot of my social networking stuff. It’s actually always been pretty hard for me to Speak Loudly in public (NOT in private; ask anyone in my family), and for years as an adolescent and woman in my young twenties, I did a lot of tucking my head, swallowing my anger, and not saying anything.
Most of that quiet was about me, not about others, but–you know–not all of it.
Bottom line: Teen suicide is too important to be quiet about. Teen suicide that’s happening because cruel, careless, thoughtless…STUPID people are persecuting these kids is WAY too important.
I honestly don’t know if wearing purple will do a thing. I don’t know if the It Gets Better campaign will do enough–let’s face it, things should be better NOW. But–yes, if it makes one teen hold on, speak out, ask for help, NOT kill themselves, then it’s doing something, helping someone, and that counts. So maybe my wearing purple does, too.
Symbols. Sometimes they’re as frustrating as the problem they’re trying to fight–because even while I wear this shirt, someone else out there is alone and frightened and angry and way too close to despair.
The alternative, though—NOT wearing this color—felt worse.
This just gets to me so much, because it feels like history repeating itself over and over and over…Gays can’t marry. My father had a good friend who, not that many years ago, had to go to Arizona to get married, because California wouldn’t let him marry the Japanese woman he loved. Gay teens are killing themselves. Black men got lynched. Some of my family escaped Germany, some didn’t.
I could look at that paragraph and see the differences. But what I see is the sameness. Hatred. Narrow-mindedness. Fear.
And then, I guess, I just keep speaking out and fighting. And, yes, today–wearing purple.