No, you don’t have your dates wrong—the fifth season of Orange Is the New Black doesn’t air until next week. Instead, we’re commemorating the color today for a more impactful reason—that is, National Gun Violence Awareness Day, which condemns the gun violence that leads to the deaths of more than 90 Americans every single day.
Launched three years ago by Everytown for Gun Safety, the Wear Orange campaign began with 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton, who was shot and killed in a Chicago park in 2013. Because orange is the color hunters wear in the woods to make their presence known, it’s also come to represent the value of human life. “I wear orange as a symbol of what’s happened to me and my family,” Hadiya’s mother says in a poignant video the organization released ahead of today’s event (June 2 was Hadiya’s birthday).
Last summer, more than 300 notable figures including then-President Barack Obama and reality star Kim Kardashian participated. Now the campaign has expanded its reach, enlisting US landmarks like the Empire State Building and Niagara Falls to go orange, with more than 250 events nationwide.
“When we engage with all aspects of culture—be that the music industry, the entertainment industry, the fashion industry—it can be incredibly meaningful to people and incredibly powerful,” said Jordana Baldwin, Everytown’s deputy director.
In fact, our very own EIC Rachel Zoe currently serves on the Everytown Creative Council, using her social media channels to encourage fans and followers to share this year’s theme, Can You See Me Now? Tomorrow, the organization expects a bigger-than-ever rally in New York City, with the council’s founding chair Julianne Moore marching alongside Lucy McBath, whose son Jordan Davis was shot and killed at a gas station in 2012. Tomorrow also marks the first Wear Orange rally in Los Angeles.
Join the #WearOrange movement here.