Monday, July 11, 2016

Photo of the Decade

Photo: Jonathan Bachman

Yes, I know it's gone viral and can be seen absolutely everywhere, and for absolutely good reason- I, like so many others, can't stop looking at it. And like any good great photo, there's good reason for that, basically because it works on so many levels, and does so, so very, very well. Composition- check, decisive moment- check, content- check, check and check.

What I first thought when I saw this photo was... superhero. Nefarious, super villains rising from the netherworld to wreak havoc on the lone guardian of the light. Alone, unafraid, strengthened by the very forces of the winds and nature at her command; she is secure and confident in her calm demeanor. Those advancing in attack formation are quick, aggressive and heavily armored- but overwhelmingly cautious all the same, fully cognizant of her latent power. 

And then, of course, there's real life- what seems an entire city's police force vs. one lone, very human Black female. And such has it always been, no matter the decade, when men of color have been attacked, beaten and killed by overwhelming forces. Their women have never been far behind, and in fact, often leading many of the various opposing and conciliatory forces at play. And always too... the iconic photo to remind us of just that.

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