Trigger: Tuesday Smillie
The textile work Together was inspired in part by the protests that took place across the country in wake of the 2014 police shooting of Michael Brown, an unarmed, African-American 18 year-old resident of Ferguson Missouri. Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot and killed Brown was acquitted of all charges. In New York City after the grand jury announced Wilson’s not-guilty verdict protesters assembled across the city.
One of the chants utilized in these protests was: WE ARE TOGETHER. In a moment of political despair this chant felt powerful in its broad reaching inclusivity. Chanted in the streets WE ARE TOGETHER celebrated the solidarity between a diverse coalition of protestors. It also erased the division between protestor and observer. Many observers, also frustrated and disheartened by the state of racial injustice in the United States applauded the protesters despite being inconvenienced by their presence.
Together calls for a coalition politic that draws on our many differences as a point of strength. In this model of organizing we have the opportunity to envision and practice an inclusivity that celebrates our differences while prioritizing the needs of those most vulnerable among us; building a culture we want to live in, as we strive to make this culture a broad reaching reality.