People are supportive and even vindictive, and they make it known. In the street, an amalgam of colorful ribbons makes us question, which causes the wearer to support. There are so many that it is often difficult to decode their message, although they certainly arouse your curiosity.
The origin of the colored ribbon is uncertain. According to historical accounts, it is believed that the first to wear it were the relatives of members of the U.S. cavalry in the nineteenth century. These family members wore it on their bodies or hung it in their homes to symbolize loyalty to the fighting soldiers. In their case, this sentiment took the form of a yellow ribbon.
Others believe that the idea of using these cause ribbons comes from the song “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree,” which inspired Penney Laingen, in 1979, to use yellow ribbons tied around trees as a symbol to ask for the release of her military husband held hostage in Tehran, Iran.
Her friends and family followed this action to show solidarity, a fact that was broadcast in the media and later became a way of expression and support in the face of social problems.
In the ’80s, the red ribbon appeared for the first time, under the idea of activists in the fight against AIDS, who decided to support people with this disease with this symbol and raise awareness for its prevention.
It should be noted that this scarlet ribbon became present worldwide thanks to the British actor Jeremy Irons, who wore it during the Tony Awards. These awards celebrate the most important of the American theater.
Another color that has transcended throughout history due to its importance for the solidarity of a cause is pink; it was used for the first time towards the end of 1990; a color attributed to the fight and support against breast cancer in women.
It was used during the New York marathon for the cure of cancer; however, the symbol went unnoticed, so it was until 1992 when it was consolidated by the idea of Alexandra Penney and Evelyn Lauder during the realization of the second annual edition of a magazine on breast cancer awareness, a fact that took transcendence thanks to the support of the cosmetics company Estee Lauder.
According to its definition, cause ribbons, also called awareness ribbons, are strips of fabric or other materials in the shape of a little, upwardly protruding ribbon. Their use extends to supporting social causes, commemorating relevant events, or raising awareness of various diseases.
Used as symbols of support and awareness for a social cause, solidarity ribbons, cause ribbons, or bows have become in recent decades an effigy of fraternity among people around the world.
These small pieces of folded fabric of no more than 10 centimeters form a ribbon that, with its color, represents a cause of solidarity, either to commemorate events, relevant facts and also as a way to raise awareness of diseases. It is a symbol that seeks to communicate an idea in a visible way to present to society, in general, a political position, opinion, or cause for the rest of the community to observe and join.
Although the small bows are regularly placed on top of clothing, they are also used on accessories and other items, such as car antennas or larger ones to hang on public buildings, trees, and balconies.
Although in principle each cause was related to a color, the proliferation of cause ribbons throughout the world led to some initiatives, such as the fight against Alzheimer’s disease, using purple and white ribbons, or that the same color can mean different reasons.
Although originally each color was related to a cause of support, today, the abundance of so many cause ribbons has led to the fact that the same tone means different reasons or that a single cause can address more than one color. The most important thing for those who wear it is what they symbolize or associate it with; then it becomes something significant and the announcement of their situation. It is not in itself the color of ribbon but the symbol.