Society and Culture

Why are People Wearing Safety Pins on their Shirts?

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People all over the country are seeking new ways to express that they don’t like Donald Trump’s sexist or racist views. And we’re getting some inspiration from the UK–after the Brexit vote in June, a Twitter user with the handle @cheeahs came up with the idea that wearing a simple safety pin could be a way of showing solidarity with minorities in Britain. She wrote that she wanted “anyone against the sort of nationalistic, racist violence we’ve been seeing” to be able to identify themselves as a “safe ally.”

Both the Brexit vote and the American election have been characterized by rising tensions and division between groups of people, with an emphasis on immigrants or people of color. Now Americans are donning the safety pin too.

The pin symbolizes that the person wearing it is in solidarity with minority groups—LGBTQ, ethnic minorities, different religions, women—basically anyone who feels threatened and scared after Trump’s election.

Sir Patrick Stewart did it.

It is important to remember that the safety pin doesn’t symbolize being “anti-Trump voters.” It’s simply a symbol of compassion and love for all people, and shows that the wearer is dissociating from hatred and discrimination. Even Trump supporters can wear them if they oppose the violence and racism that some people express.

Now get out and get yourself a safety pin!

Emma Von Zeipel
Emma Von Zeipel is a staff writer at Law Street Media. She is originally from one of the islands of Stockholm, Sweden. After working for Democratic Voice of Burma in Thailand, she ended up in New York City. She has a BA in journalism from Stockholm University and is passionate about human rights, good books, horses, and European chocolate. Contact Emma at



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