Sunday, April 23, 2017

#113 / Red For Resistance

Carmen Perez, pictured, graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 2001. She is now the Executive Director of The Gathering for Justice, a nonprofit founded by legendary artist and activist Harry Belafonte. 

Perez served as a national co-chair of the incredibly successful Women’s March on Washington on January 21st, the day after the inauguration of President Donald J. Trump. The March drew half a million people to the capital. An estimated five million people participated worldwide. 

Perez will be speaking in Santa Cruz during the upcoming UCSC Alumni Weekend. She will be presenting the keynote address at the Cocoanut Grove at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, April 28th. Click this link if you would like to register.

The Santa Cruz Good Times has published an article about Perez that is well worth reading, and that I have been referencing and relying on here. I was particularly struck by the following quote, which contains a kind of hidden message: 

What we launched immediately after the march were 10 actions in 100 days, and so we are now on our seventh action. You can go to our website [] to see what actions we put together ... to elevate our partners, to ensure that people know that the work just didn’t start on January 21st, but there have been so many organizations doing this work for so many years that we need to support. 
We were able to bring together so many people for A Day Without a Woman [strike], where we created three entry points. One was for women and men and families to wear red in solidarity if they cared about women’s issues. The second was if you have to buy anything, purchase from local and women-owned businesses. The third was not to go to work. There were so many people that participated. 
And to this day the color red has been a symbolism of resistance. And it comes from our elders—Dolores Huerta and Cesar Chavez … (emphasis added).

Perez tells us that the color red is the symbol of resistance, and of course it is. But in Spanish, the word "red" means "net" or "network," the very thing that Perez describes in the quotation above, as she talks of the many organizations, over time, that have been struggling for justice, everywhere. 

We resist, and we win, when we are connected. When we work together. 

"Red" [English] is a symbol of resistance. "Red" [Spanish] is the collaboration and connection that is the resistance itself. 

Red is for resistance.

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