ADDRESSING DISCRIMINATION AND HATE SPEECH IN PUBLIC SPACES
We are currently witnessing a sharp increase in discriminatory speech and hate speech in media discourse, on social media and in parliamentary politics throughout Europe - the streets, walls, buildings and parks of our cities are unfortunately no exception. We find many instances of this in the graffiti, writings, stickers and posters “adorning” our public spaces. The primary target of this hatred, othering, negative stereotyping and stigmatisation are marginalised groups such as the LGBTQIA+ community, asylum seekers and immigrants, people of colour and Muslim women, to name a few.
We are aware that the existence of hate speech in particular and discrimination towards marginalized groups in general is deeply rooted in ideologies and systems of oppression such as racism, patriarchy, misogyny, sexism, homophobia and nationalism. We therefore find it crucial to equip ourselves with tools and knowledge that enable us to imagine an alternative perspective on the world, one based on protecting human rights, international cooperation, intercultural coexistence and respect for differences and diversity.
We present an online map of DecontRamination, a space where incidents of public hate speech against marginalised groups can be documented. This allows for a monitoring of the developments in the streets as well as providing a concrete starting point for resistance against this hatred.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
The DecontRamination Project first started in 2013 as part of the work of the Appareo association. This initiative, along with the online map for documenting hate and discriminatory speech, was recognized as Good Practice by the Council of Europe’s “No Hate” campaign. Now the Ljubljana Pride Association is working on reviving the project, together with INAR, Ireland and Loesje Berlin, Germany, as we recognize that not much has changed in the field of addressing hate speech since the formation of the project in 2013.
How can you participate:
Join us for a walk along the paths of street art, guerrilla activism and spray-painted word.
Be contrarian and DecontRaminate Hate! With your help, we can document the hateful and discriminatory graffiti and writing by entering it into the DecontRamination map and thus draw attention to the hate and discriminatory speech that occupies our streets.
But be constructive too! Work towards generating positive, creative and proactive messaging and emancipatory speech!
If you come across
– hateful graffiti or writing,
– already neutralised or decontraminated hate or discriminatory speech,
take a photo and send it, alongside its location and any other information, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any and all contributions to this mapping-out of the life of our streets is extremely welcome and appreciated!