Over the past few months, I’ve made a couple of political posts on Facebook and had some followers tell me I should “shut up about politics and just make pretty knitting patterns.” Yesterday I posted this picture in a sketchbook group I belong to on Facebook. Several people advised me to “turn the page and draw something that makes you happy.” Really? WTF?
In the aftermath of the Trump win, the role of the white artist is to continually name white supremacy, and to recognize their privilege by supporting and amplifying the work of artists of color. The time for quirky, white indie covers of songs by black artists is over.
― Vivek Shraya, writer and visual artist
Well…. NO! I will not shut up. I will call out Donald Trump and his racist, sexist advisors on their hate and arrogance and bullying and bad policies every single day until they are out of power. And I will not apologize for it. They will not silence me. Their bigotry will not win. Resistance is NOT futile.
America, the country that I was taught provided “liberty and justice for all” has just elected a president who … well, if you don’t know how much of a racist, sexist bully he is already from the words that have come out of his own mouth, I’m not sure there’s any way to convince you.
If you think it’s OK that Donald Trump bragged about his fame and affluence giving him the privilege to grab women by their crotches without permission, if you think it’s OK that he wants to break up families and round up millions of people to deport them, if you think it’s OK that he wants the members of an entire religious group to register with the government, if you think it’s OK that he wants to block certain immigrants from coming into this country because of their religion, then you are part of the problem. If you think it’s OK for the president-elect to hire a white supremacist as one of his senior advisors, then you are part of the problem. If you think it’s OK for a bunch of old white men to tell women what they can and cannot do with their own bodies, if you think it’s OK for our government to tell people who they can fall in love with an marry, if you think it’s OK for the KKK to have a victory parade and the Alt-Right to celebrate the election of our next president, then you are part of the problem.
If you think I should shut up about all of this and knit and draw pretty things to make you feel better, don’t hold your breath.
I am angry. I am not trying to get rid of my anger. I do most of my best work when I am angry. And I have a lot of work to do over the next four years.
Here is a good article with information from 21 artists about doing meaningful work during the time of Trump.