Among the showstopping fashions on this year's Oscars red carpet, you might notice a pop of orange on some gowns and suits. The unexpected color comes from tiny, unassuming pins — but they carry a huge message. At the 90th Annual Academy Awards, some celebrities are reportedly wearing orange pins for gun control. The pins picture a traditional American flag — only without the iconic red, white, and blue. The orange American flag is the logo of the non-profit organization Everytown for Gun Safety, which is one of the largest gun violence prevention groups in the United States. And stars are using the pin to bring attention to the issue of gun violence at the Oscars.
The protest moment during the Oscars comes less than three weeks after a school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida left 17 dead and several others injured. The mass shooting reignited the gun control debate in the United States, which has left many fiercely advocating on both sides of the table. As it goes, celebrities in support of gun reform used their moment on the carpet to show their support for stricter gun laws.
The pins are available in packs of three on the Everytown for Gun Safety website for $15, all of which goes to the organization's efforts.
Celebrities like Lin Manuel Miranda and Chris Messina wore the pin on the red carpet in simple protest.
Everytown announced the sartorial protest on Twitter just prior to the show, and film fans were pleasantly surprised by the news.
The protest — though through a simple, small pin — still caught the attention of Oscars viewers. Many were excited to see their favorite stars supporting a progressive cause at a high-profile event.
Some were reminded of the old adage "better late than never" by the political protest.
Though many were heartened to see celebrities supporting gun control at such a public setting, others pointed out that there was a hint of irony in movie stars supporting gun control — especially those starring in films glorifying gun violence.
Others were critical about celebrities advocating for gun control while simultaneously being surrounded by armed security at the event.
Some advocates against gun control used the irony of the high-security event being used as a platform to promote gun safety as a way to call out the so-called "hypocrisy" of the liberal stars.
The Oscars certainly aren't the first awards show where stars advocated for social change this season. With the #MeToo Movement and Hollywood's Time's Up initiative both shining a light on sexual harassment and assault in the entertainment industry this award's season, many actors have used highly-publicized awards shows to make a statement.
At the Golden Globes, which is often considered the precursor to the Oscars, attendees wore all black to protest gendered violence in the industry in the aftermath of the Harvey Winestein accusations which rocked Hollywood in late 2017. Celebrities also wore Time's Up pins to the ceremony in a direct nod to a non-profit of the same name launched by several women in Hollywood including Reese Witherspoon, Emma Stone, and Shonda Rhimes. The initiative aims to end the silence surrounding sexual violence, harassment, and bias in the entertainment industry.
Before the Oscars, however, Time's Up announced they would not coordinate any protest — sartorial or otherwise — for the show.
"We are not an awards show protest group," filmmaker Ava DuVernay told the LA Times before the event. "So we stand down this time."
Even if an organized protest wasn't planned by the anti-harassment group, it seems some celebrities have taken it upon themselves to stand up for a different cause this time around, continuing the history of fashionable protests this awards season.