Thursday, May 7, 2009

Pink Shirts For Justice

These two boys deserve a medal. David Shepherd and Travis Price of Cambridge, MA, took a stand against bullying at Central Kings Rural High School.

After watching a fellow student get harassed and mocked and called (gasp) homosexual for showing up to school in a pink shirt, they decided they'd had enough of the bully culture at their school. They got online and spread word of a plan to have students show up en masse in pink. They bought 75 pink tank tops, and got as many people as they could to participate.

On the day, out of a student body of 830 students, about half were wearing pink. The bullies were predictably angered by the stunt, but the message had been made loud and clear.

It is a classic pacifist move - resist violence publicly and loudly (preferably in large numbers) by shaming the violent and showing them to be petty and ridiculous. Martin Luther King Jr. called it arousing the conscience. The more we make a public show of our peaceful conduct in the face of violence, the more we undermine the social acceptance of brutality.

Fearmongers and bullies in our media and government who want to persuade us that perpetual warfare and torture are the only way to keep us safe don't deserve our respect, but our ridicule. We should all show up outside the offices and homes of such individuals in pink shirts and shake our heads in benign disapproval at their childish insecurity.


John Shuck said...


Nick.Larson said...

That is really great. I totally want to figure how to do this in the church. Now all we need is a topic/action.

Cecilia said...

This is so fantastic. Thank you for bringing it to our attention.

Pax, C.

Doug Hagler said...

Heh. As usual, our high schoolers prove themselves morally superior to our government.

But is anyone surprised?

Go kids! Humiliate us into being better people if you have to.

Steve Schuler said...

It is all to easy to expose ourselves to so much bad news that we don't see the good that is all around us. Thanks for bringing this moving story to my attention.

Craig said...

Shockingly enough, I have a ton of respect for these kids. I would hope that my kids would behave similarly in standing up for the bullied.