Dominique Apollon didn’t realize that doing something as simple as putting on a bandage that was the same color as his skin would have such an emotional effect on him.
But that’s exactly what happened.
It’s taken me 45 trips around the sun, but for the first time in my life I know what it feels like to have a “band-aid” in my own skin tone. You can barely even spot it in the first image. For real I’m holding back tears. pic.twitter.com/GZR7hRBkJf
— Dominique Apollon (@ApollonTweets) April 19, 2019
He recently told Buzzfeed News about how profound the moment was for him:
“As a black person, I’m not used to seeing products geared to me in national online retailers. The default is typically some type of Caucasian skin tone. I could hardly see it. It just blended so perfectly in a way that if I was walking into a room, no one would even notice it was there.”
People on Twitter responded about having similar experiences.
Like opening a Crayola box for the first time…
This was one of the first things that made me aware of “race” when I was a kid. I remember asking my mom about the bandaid color…Also the “flesh” crayon.
— DCasp (@AuRevoir3179) April 20, 2019
Or not realizing that this was such a big thing to others…
Your point is so profound. I am guilty as I had never once given that a thought, for being such a small thing. However, it is rather significant and I thank you for the enlightenment. I am happy for you. Thanks for sharing, I learned something today.
— Mike Morigeau (@mikemorigeau) April 22, 2019
And teachers understanding that this is an essential part of their future…
Future teacher here! Adding these to my list of essential classroom supplies! ❤️ pic.twitter.com/UVHLI2nfoG
— Jenn (@Jenn_Washam) April 20, 2019
Still, some did say that the color of the bandage didn’t matter.
“It’s a cumulative and compounding experience over time. And it fits a broader pattern of exclusion that is even more painful and damaging. I’m not saying that the industry should be designing bandages with shades that match every skin tone in the human spectrum. The point is in a just society, everyone should feel so valued, so embraced, and seen.”