Yesterday it felt like the internet had a good day!
We woke up to be informed that someone had started a crowdfunder on YouCare to raise money to pay the fine that Penny Sparrow received earlier this year. For being racist. The fundraiser didn’t even try sugarcoat what she’d done or suggest she’d been wronged. It was merely to raise money to pay for the fine for her racism…
But what a great day it turned out to be from that point for a number of reasons:
[I] My wife tbV [aka The Beautiful Val, to me] gave me the idea to find a way to shut it down.
[II] i decided to act on that idea and found the crowdfunding site and sent a complaint to them and also posted the link on FB asking people to get involved.
[III] Someone informed me that they had a Facebook group so we jumped in there and left a message as well.
[IV] A good bunch of people started sharing the original post and asking their friends to jump on board and help shut it down.
[V] A couple of hours later tbV tried to login to check on the progress and couldn’t so we wondered if it were possible…?
[VI] It WERE possible:
[VII] Huge shout out to YouCaring for immediately shutting down both [there were two!] fundraisers for Penny Sparrow as it went against their code of conduct.
[VIII] The conversations and celebrations on statuses [stati?] sharing the news of this happening and how it happened were so positive and so full of life and “Let’s do this more!” and just really encouraging. It felt like social media scored a huge big positive yesterday in the #NotOnOurWatch movement in terms of a group of people gently but firmly saying, “That is not okay!”
It’s not that we hate Penny Sparrow. Well, i guess i can only speak for myself on that one. But i want that to be absolutely clear. She is someone who needs some serious help and she has beliefs and actions that are very hurtful and unhelpful and we are not going to tolerate those. As a follower of Jesus i believe that everyone has the potential for redemption and transformation.
But i really don’t want the focus to be on her for longer than it needs to be. The focus is on a group of South Africans of all shades and ages and spread around the country who realised for a moment that the ants in this situation outnumber the crickets.
i’ll let you in on a little secret though… the ants ALWAYS outnumber the crickets, and the more we realise this, and the more we add our voices and our actions to moments of racism, sexism, bullying, verbal abuse, xenophobia and a number of other issues in our country, the more often we can group together and speak #NotOnOurWatch… well, the closer the never-yet-existent rainbow comes to being a reality.
Well done, internet. Yesterday was a good day for you. What do you have for us today?