What Tinashe Wore to Protest This Weekend, and Why It Matters
Over the past 10 weeks, a fog of uncertainty, fear, and mourning has hung over the world's head. Painful as this time may be, someday soon, we can expect to find a cure for the coronavirus that plagues our cities. But even when that happens, many among us will still be forced to live in fear of a sickness that long predates COVID-19.
For the last five days, communities have been ignited by outrage over the treatment of Black people in America. Following the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor, and the failure to hold the offending police officers accountable for their deadly actions, protestors have taken to the streets to stand against the violence that has persevered in this country for generations.
Some high-profile celebrities eschewed the disappointing silence that others offered on social media, and joined the crowds themselves. Singer and songwriter Tinashe posted photos to Instagram and Twitter holding up a Black Lives Matter sign with the caption "Show up."
Here on Look of the Day, we typically highlight outfits that are noteworthy for their interesting styling, support of independent designers, or that inspire nostalgia. Today is not a typical day, and so today's feature aims to do more: to provide individuals with the tools they need to protest successfully and safely.
Tinashe's mask, all-black outfit, knee- and elbow-covering garments, and comfortable sneakers allowed her to join the crowds safely and comfortably for long periods of time, while permitting her valuable anonymity that protected her from arrest. If you plan on attending the ongoing protests this week, we advise planning your attending outfit in a way that best prepares you for dealing with anti-protestor police tactics. Here are our recommendations gathered from reliable sources across the internet, including a widely circulated graphic also shared by Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a Medium post by activist and freelance writer Claire Rudy Foster, and a one-sheet from Amnesty International:
What to wear and bring:
- Neutral-colored clothing, with removable layers in case you need to exit the crowd to avoid arrest
- CDC-recommended double-ply face mask as social distancing becomes more difficult
- Sunglasses, or glasses if you wear them, instead of contact lenses, in case of mace/pepper spray
- Hat for privacy and protection from the sun and projectiles
- Hands-free, small bag like a fanny pack for essential items including a first-aid kit, water bottle, and individually packaged snacks
- Heat-resistant glove to handle and remove gas canisters thrown into crowds
- Solution of baking soda and water to rinse eyes in the event of mace or pepper spray
- Signs — make your message heard
What NOT to wear and bring:
- Jewelry that can be grabbed
- Oil/mineral-based makeup and moisturizer, as it can bind to irritating, crowd-dispersing chemicals
- Avoid wearing your hair down if it is long enough to be grabbed onto
- Items that could be seized by the police, including knives, scissors, marijuana
- Opt for pads over tampons — if arrested, you may not have the opportunity to change
Other words of advice:
- Attend with a friend or partner, determine an emergency meeting spot if you get split up
- Be cautious of phone use, turn off location services and refrain from sharing images to social media that show others' faces
- Write down important numbers like your local lawyers union in case of arrest — better yet, write them on yourself in permanent marker