Self Expression Magazine

Instead of Wearing a Damn Safety Pin…

By Urbanbushwoman @urbanbushwoman9

I know it’s been a month of Sundays since I’ve blogged but please indulge me. Allow me to share a quick anecdote. I remember having a conversation with a friend who is HIV positive about wearing the red ribbon. He said he doesn’t wear one. I gave him the “Huh?” face and asked why. He simply stated, “People with AIDS don’t want a damn ribbon. They want a cure.” I never wore that ribbon again.

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In regards to this safety pin campaign that’s supposed to show some kind of solidarity with marginalized people I must say as one of those people….ummm…STOP IT! Like really. Put the white guilt aside and STOP. IT. NOW.This election has left us all cut to the white meat. Believe me, it hurts us all on so many levels. And everyone needs time to grieve this loss because fa real it truly feels like someone just fucking died.  So cry. Scream. Get angry. Take to the streets and protest for 24 hours (Note: I’m not a huge fan of protests because they seem pretty aimless: look at the infamous Occupiers for an example of my point. But once in awhile I get why it’s needed). And when you’re done accepting that a yam colored, disgusting demagogue is now president of the USA consider five other things you can do to show some solidarity with the “vulnerable”.

  1. Volunteer– I’m no where near old enough to remember -HA!HA! HA!- but I believe it was President Kennedy who charged the country with doing something for our fellow man. We need to resuscitate this movement. There are many, many, many nonprofit organizations who serve the vulnerable every day. And they are going to need our support now more than ever. So don’t just get into the spirit around the holidays because people are hungry and homeless on March 3rd just like they are on Christmas day. Make it a point to volunteer an hour or two of your time somewhere every month.
  2. Support a legal fund. I say this one because legal battles will be most assuredly be brewing in the next four (or probably eight) years and you know it. There will be a myriad of cases coming up involving voter fraud, discrimination, hate crimes, sexual harassment, and more. Vulnerable people can’t afford a lawyer. And the lawyers that work for non profit organizations pro bono will need funding to build a solid case. NAACP, ACLU, National Women’s Law Center, Immigrant Defense Project, Lambda Legal and Disabled Citizens all have legal funds that need continuous financial support.
  3. Donate to a political candidate’s fundraiser. I mean seriously. How many ways does a candidate have to ask you for $5 before you give? It takes money to defeat trump the Chumps Trumps of the world and your pats on the back and social media shout outs don’t buy yard signs or ads on the Internet. You may not have time to attend a dinner or happy hour with your fave politico. You may live too far away to attend his or her party. But damn it! send a check. Money talks. You know the rest.
  4. Support minority and women owned businesses. Your president-elect is a business man so maybe he will be pro-small biz I guess but let’s try to be really pro small biz. A lot of these female and minority owned businesses are already struggling like crazy from the economy recovery and the ACA backlash. And if they employ undocumented workers….WOOO… LAWD CHILE….it’s gonna be a disaster if DT gets his way. Commit a couple of dollars to a small, local woman or minority owned biz and stay off Amazon dot com. Try to find what you need and want from someone who can give you that one on one service. And rave about them on Yelp or other online navigation sites to recommend small businesses you have had good experiences with along the way.
  5. Help us stay healthy. Stay with me, Boo! It may sound unusual but health really is wealth. Think about it. Vulnerable people are further weakened by bad health. That’s when they begin to lean heavily upon health insurance. You know how health insurance has deepened the divide between classes in this country. I’m not going to pretend like our choices aren’t our own here but look at the bigger picture. Smoking is advertised primarily to poor people. Physicians and specialists are hard to find in poor neighborhoods and many don’t accept Medicaid . Food deserts are not only making us fat but they’re blowing up our blood pressure and cholesterol levels. And how the hell are people supposed to exercise in their neighborhood when the sidewalks and streets are JACKED, the playground equipment is outdated and/or they’re afraid of being robbed or shot in the streets (by their neighbors or the police)? Your zip code really does determine your life expectancy. Don’t even get me started on the mental health neglect, pollution, water contamination or ineffective substance abuse treatment. As a long time health advocate and reporter, I’ve always believed that if we concentrate on improving our wellness our dependence on health insurance lessens. Would you agree? Well then use your white privilege to challenge these issues because no one is listening to us.

BONUS: Speak out and act out against police brutality and killings of unarmed black people. This “All Lives Matter” thing is a joke. If all lives matter, why aren’t your asses out here protesting with us? I’ll wait.

Okay. You have been officially advised by this Urban Bushwoman to stop wearing that safety pin and do something more substantial to show your solidarity. Actions speaks so much louder than words so MOVE.  Feel free to share this post to help educate the masses. I have to go back to writing for my paid gigs now because I want to be able to put my money were my big beautiful mouth is.  Y’all take care!

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