It’s Valentines Day today, which also means it’s the second annual “One Billion Rising” Day, an international event started by playwright Eve Ensler to draw attention to domestic violence.
The event is billed as a global call to women survivors of violence to gather safely, together or alone — in courthouses, police stations, government offices, parks and homes — to express themselves through art, word and dance.
Last year’s inaugural event inspired women from around the world to post ‘selfies’ of themselves dancing — some in countries where public dance is forbidden.
ROBIN YOUNG, HOST:
So, Jeremy, happy Valentine's Day.
JEREMY HOBSON, HOST:
Happy Valentine's Day.
YOUNG: And don't forget it's also One Billion Rising Day. Millions of people around the world dancing in the hopes of drawing attention to domestic violence. Here they are in Cape Town, South Africa.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
YOUNG: Lots of people crowded around the stage there. This is the event started last Valentine's Day by playwright Eve Ensler. It can be quite profound, Jeremy. Women dance in secret in countries where it's prohibited, and then they take selfies. They dance in public parks, in offices. We're trying to get it together to do it, but Lynn forgot her tutu.
YOUNG: So you can check out all the videos, maybe post yours at hereandnow.org.
HOBSON: You know, it's also - this is Valentine's Day. This is the day that the great abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass chose as his birthday, knowing his exact birthday was. But he chose this day because, apparently, his mother used to call him my little Valentine.
YOUNG: Lovely. Lovely. I would love to choose it as well.
HOBSON: From NPR and WBUR Boston, I'm Jeremy Hobson.
YOUNG: I'm Robin Young. This is HERE AND NOW. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.