I’m going to change the world today. My plan is simple: I am going to wear a purple shirt. It will not have a catchy slogan or a sharp logo, but it will carry a message all the same. It will say to anyone who sees me, “I care.”
Wednesday, October 20 has been designated Purple Shirt Day or Spirit Day (so named for the meaning of purple in the LGBT rainbow symbol) to speak out against anti-LGBT bullying, in response to the six recent suicides of young people who were bullied and harassed for being, or for being thought to be, gay.
Viewpoints on the morality or nature of being gay are irrelevant to the issue. All that matters is this: Every life is precious. No parent can rightly tolerate the bullying of any child. No person of faith can rightly tolerate the abuse of any soul. No human can rightly tolerate the harassment of any being. And so I will wear my purple shirt as a mother and a Christian and a human being, and I will change the world today.
Human change is rarely accomplished in large, sweeping ways; More often, it is small and incremental. A person experiences a singular moment, or even a series of little moments, wherein a change takes hold and begins to grow, and as that one person is engaged in life with other people, the change grows in iterations. If one young person sees my shirt today and feels– even for a moment– less alone and despairing, more filled with hope and love, then the world will be changed.
Will you change the world today?