The Safe Space Movement
As the gay and lesbian communities grew in the public spectrum so did the animosity towards the culture. Within the U.S. in the 1960’s, the women’s movement started the safe space meet-up group to help those who have been harassed or disrespected for their beliefs and expression of those beliefs. Their credo states, ” A place where anyone can relax and be fully self-expressed, without fear of being made to feel uncomfortable, unwelcome or challenged on account of biological sex, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, cultural background, age, or physical or mental ability; a place where the rules guard each person’s self-respect, dignity, and feelings and strongly encourage everyone to respect others.” The idea is to create spaces that help facilitate personal growth while also wrestling with how to positively impact the world at the same time.The safe space movement has remained largely associated with the LGBT community but has recently traversed into the realm of any narrative that threatens the person or the person’s own belief system. In a sense, the movement has evolved into a public forum of discussion and therapy for people suffering from an assortment of traumatic events and looking for a way to deal with them. By convening together on a common malady the group strength can become the individuals. Although controversial, these groups have allowed many the freedom of expression not easily obtained in a public forum. As more groups emerge it becomes clear, more people are self-segregated because of their demoralization for their beliefs. Unfortunately, even within these spaces are heated heretical debates of injustice. Free speech is a double-edged sword, within any environment, not excluding a “Safe Space”. The dichotomy of “free” speech, within a “Safe Space” is apparent. While the setbacks to the evolving nature of these groups remain. It is clear that many people are still empowered and helped along the road to recovery within them.