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Assayer of Student Opinion.

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How to be a better activist and ally

Comic by Maya Alvarado

Activism can look different at every stage in every space. Whether it be resistance through things like protesting, art, music, film or poetry, people can show up for communities in a multitude of ways.

But with recent political movements and celebratory observances, not everyone contributes in a productive manner.

For example, while Black History Month is an internationally acknowledged annnual observance, it has only been recognized for a little more than half a century.

First acknowledged by President Gerald Ford of the United States in 1976, it is now officially recognized by Canada, Ireland and the United Kingdom. Black History Month lasts from Feb. 1 through March 1 every year.This tends to be a time for companies to take advantage of months like this that highlight minority groups. 

Big clothing, tech, travel and shoe companies tend to advertise these minority groups under the gise of inclusivity in hopes of attracting a wider audience.

However, when the month ends all remants of support for these groups tend to dissapate. 

Where there would once be flags, statements, models, quotes and posts this is only a commercialization of  politcal movements and minority celebrations. 

Now the question lies within the company of what they are actually doing to help these minority groups. Additionally it is a time for people to look at themselves and realize what kind of activist they want or hope to be. 

For those that wish to provide allyism that exceeds beyond being performative, one can avoid instances like those that arose during the Black Lives Matter Movement. Posting a black square on social platforms such as Instagram, participating in faux trends on TikTok or hashtags on Twitter; these exist only as a facade of alliance. 

The best way to support these communities are by donating time, money and resources to the correct channels. Signing petitions, attending protests as is accesible contacting local government officials and attending town halls are all profecient ways in becoming a better activist and ally. 

Social media can exist as a medium for spreading awareness and informational links when immediate assistance might not be achieved. 

It is important for people to contribute where they can so that observances and movements like these can reach new heights. 

The editorial staff may be reached at [email protected]

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How to be a better activist and ally