I saw this photo on Humans of New York the other day and really thought it captured a lot of what we were talking about in class the other day regarding sexually transmitted diseases and Hepatitis C.

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(Again, I tried to change the size of the image, but I must be doing something wrong. The text says “I scratch myself every time the cops come because they don’t like to deal with you if you’re bleeding.”)

This image leaves me with so many questions–perhaps both the best and worst thing about Humans of New York. First, why is he trying to get away from the police? I mean I understand WHY he is… But, how did the police system get so messed up that it can’t help people who need it most? And, how did the police system determine who is worth helping and why? I’m not afraid of the police, but that’s because I fall into the privileged category of people the system is designed to help. Also, why do the police leave him alone if he’s bleeding? If they are really trained to help those who need help, then you would think that they would be more inclined to help those who are bleeding. It frustrates me that there are so many people who are completely shut out of resources meant to help them simply because they aren’t considered to be the ones worth helping.

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One response »

  1. Thanks a lot for posting this Laurel. It really bothers me how little the police ‘protects and serves’ their citizens. This reminds me of Gregg Bordowitz’s lecture last week where he discussed how during the AIDS crisis the government failed to provide healthcare access to the disenfranchised groups who needed it most. Unfortunately it is still more or less the same situation today.

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