It's tough at the moment to find the words to describe the last few months. With quarantine and inflamed racial tensions across the US, it has certainly been a historically difficult year for our country to say the very least.
Most of my spare time has been filled with walking my dog and taking photos of flowers---which has been so therapeutic during this time. It's been rewarding to photograph something for myself that I normally wouldn't.
During this historic time in our country, I've considered my role as a journalist. Where do I fit in this? When the first night of protesting began in Indianapolis, without much thought I hopped on my bike and went to work. No one had asked me to be there, but I showed up. I had the "this is what we do" mentality, which I am ashamed to admit. I also photographed some clean-up the following morning. But as things set in, I felt immense guilt.
Was I needed as a photographer in that situation? Would I have been better off staying home, and keeping myself and others safe (ie. taking up physical space/not to mention a global pandemic)? Was I better to be there as a white person, linking my arms to protect others rather than photographing?
I've gained a mentality somewhere along the way that when news is breaking, "we" show up.
Something felt off though. I don't think I thought about what was REALLY happening initially.
I don't know the answers to my questions. But thinking about them has challenged me as a journalist and I am continuing to think about them.
I stayed put for the following nights when riots developed. I told myself, unless I was assigned, I would not be occupying space for safety reasons. (I DID however, take a lens along with me to a Black Lives Matter city skate cruise I took part in).
My challenges feel selfish, but feel worth noting as I share some images with you all.
To my few readers, I hope you are well, staying mindful and staying safe.
Below are a few photos from the Black Lives Matter city cruise.
Lastly, I'd like to include a NYT assignment I worked on early COVID. It's about a rural hospital in Indiana and how they handled a surge of COVID cases in their small town.