"OK" Hand Gesture Banned Not For Racism, But Because Nation Is Absolutely Not Okay
The “OK” gesture is one of the most familiar and popular hand signs in America. The making of a circle with the index finger and thumb while letting the other fingers remain extended has for years been a signal that things are alright.
But recently there has been some controversy about the gesture. One group has come out saying that the “OK” sign is racist. Some have suggested that flashing the alright symbol constitutes a hate crime. But this is not true. In fact, we have uncovered the real reason the sign has been banned.
“We are not okay. We are not alright. We are not fine,” says Renee Porter, of Hands Free, a Lexington-based think tank concerned with liberties and meanings associated with physical movement. “Divers use this signal, since they cannot speak underwater. One diver inquires of another diver of his well-being by sending out the ‘OK’ sign. The other diver flashes back the same signal to let him know all is well. History is sending us the sign inquiring about our status as a culture. We cannot, nor should we respond with, ‘We’re fine.’ So while we as an organization usually defend the use of hand signals, in this case, we recommend the ‘OK’ sign be banned because it is simply outdated, and untrue.”
Actor Matthew Mcconaughey, who popularized the phrase, “Alright, alright, alright” a few years ago in a film has also weighed in on the topic. “I wish I had never uttered the words. They have become a thing. We are so far from alright that I’m thinking about floating a new catchphrase in my next movie. It would be, ‘Alwrong, alwrong, alwrong.’”