Rather than hold a one minute silence, why not hold a One Minute’s Noise, or Shout Against Hate for May 17? Maybe it makes more sense to do an act where people really unleash their emotions and make themselves heard, rather than stay quiet?
Activists who have taken part in these events report that the atmosphere can become electric – much more than they had imagined – revealing the hidden (or until then silent) power of collective passion for change. It’s also a really simple (and free) event to organise, especially on short notice, and can be easily added on to other actions around the Day (for example, at the start or end of a march, or day of community actions).
Some ways to increase the noise include blowing whistles, beating drums, banging on pots and pans (or other everyday household objects), singing or shouting in chorus, using megaphones, microphones or a stereo, or bringing along your musical instrument of choice.
Check out this video of a One Minute Noise / Shout Against Hate, from IDAHOT 2014, by Transvanilla in Budapest, Hungary.
It could also be held in a local or private space, such as a community centre, perhaps as an ‘ice breaker’ before other events (therefore helping everyone to feel more at ease to express themselves, having participated in this collective act to start with).
Or you could hold it in a public space (in a city square or outside a state building), or as part of a community show or performance for May 17 – encouraging the audience to raise their voices in concert.
The atmosphere could obviously be fun or, actually, it could be solemn – with people really venting their emotions, and shouting from the heart. It could be about unleashing and channeling people’s anger and hurt about injustice into something positive, vocal and collective.
A Shout Against Hate could also take the form of a (filmed) flashmob, where one person starts, and then others – seemingly randomly – start joining in, before – after a while – hundreds of people are joined in a massive Shout Against Hate !