Fashion Revolution Week
COVID-19 has closed Milan Fashion Week and is now opening a new chapter of the Fashion industry relationships with Asia. On the 24th of April 2013, 1134 people have lost their lives in Bangladesh in a structural failure accident recorded as the the deadliest one in modern human history and the deadliest garment factory disaster in history, as written in Wikipedia.
"The building contained clothing factories, a bank, apartments, and several shops. The shops and the bank on the lower floors were immediately closed after cracks were discovered in the building. The building's owners ignored warnings to avoid using the building after cracks had appeared the day before. Garment workers were ordered to return the following day, and the building collapsed during the morning rush-hour."
Today we can read that meanwhile, powerful fashion groups are investing in supplying medical material to protect hospital workers from COVID-19 in Europe, they refused to fulfill their payments on Asian clothing factories, leaving many Bangladeshi Chinese and Indian workers without their job being paid, yet underpaid by those groups.
Heroes are people who will put their energy towards protection and carrying. Today, with the #stayathome decision and respecting the distance we are all heroes as we are protecting ourself, people around us and then beyond our physical reach. People that we don't know. People we might never meet but that are part of humanity. And this is what today we are trying to protect. Because we are humans being. I believe that this is the time when no one could ever see an another human being without thinking that what he or she suffers from, can not happen to someone I know, or to myself. COVID-19 pandemic has taught us this point very clearly.
In fact, as we can not move, we can't really go outside and protest. But there are many ways to show that we won't take the responsibility in a tragedy. Same pacifism than staying at home during COVID-19. Some people said that they are frustrated because of the virus an invisible enemy. So they can't really "fight against" it. But it is not actually true. This is not a war. This is a "stop" message.
If we don't want to be responsible for a tragedy nor being part of it, then we perfectly know now how to do so: just stopping. Stop buying fast fashion clothes is about freedom.
Some years ago I was reading about Jean Genet, a poet, who one day stole an edition of a book written by an author he admired a lot for his vision of the world. As this edition was quite costly, the judge asked him if he knew how much the book cost. Jean Genet replied: "I don't know the price your Honour, but I know the value".
The Balcony, written by Jean Genet. Here a version of this text directed by Victor Garcia and produced by Ruth Escobar.