Canary in the Coal Mine

On Tuesday in London designer Vivienne Westwood suspended herself in a bird cage 10 feet in the air outside of a criminal court. Wearing a canary yellow suit, she was protesting Julian Assange’s potential extradition from Britain to the United States, where he’s been charged with conspiracy to hack government computers and espionage. “I am the canary in the coal mine,” she yelled through a megaphone to a crowd of cheering protesters.
This of course, wasn’t her first creative political demonstration. In 2015, she drove a tank to David Cameron’s home to protest fracking. She also distributed “I am Julian Assange” T-shirts at her spring 2013 runway show at London’s Ecuadorean embassy, where Assange was sheltering at the time. 
In this case, Westwood drew an equivalence between Assange and a canary: “I am Julian Assange,” read the sign below her.  She went on to say, “If the canary died, [miners] all got out. Julian Assange is in a cage, and he needs to get out. Don’t extradite to America.”

Posted by: TAWD on July 26, 2020

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