2020 has been a very strange year. Businesses hurting or disappearing, shortage of supply and the fear of how to pay normal bills that are now piling high. As an artist; I have always had a passion to narrate a story through my photography. I have the same approach when I do portraiture also; we all have a story and I want to tell it through the art of photography. I picked up a few of my lenses and went town to get in the middle of it on Sunday. Below you will see a number of the images I took in Pacific Beach yesterday during the protest. Let me take you through it one frame at a time.
here are my 5 takeaways:
1. The hungry stomach doesn't care or listen.
When people feel desparate, then they think for themselves. We are programmed for self survival and times like these, we are tested to our limits.
2. What was the topic?
I wanted to tell you stories without faces. I wanted you to judge for yourself. How many folks are thinking for their own individual beliefs and convinience where some believe their basic rights are taken; however, I was concerned that people took this moment to bring so many different topics all together in one place.
3. Should they?
I saw a sign that said "I love my country but I hate the government!" we might believe someone might be wrong in pursuit but they still have their right to protest and be heard. What is important is that this should be applied to all or none and also I was concerned of how most protesters did not respect the space and health of those who were not in the protest and simply were trying to walk by.
4. Why is there so much confusion?
How can some folks be locked up for the fear they'll catch the coronavirus as soon as they leave their house and some believe it's a complete made-up lie by government and others. Why is it, that in the age of technology and access to data and information somehow has confused so many folks? Where do we get our information?
5. Should California open up?
I posted this pole and 67% voted no. The majority of those folks are small business owners and normal working folks. I saw one news outlet reported of a crowd of a hundred people at the protest; I can tell you it was easily over that figure. At least 1,000 protestors were present.
I am not a politician or doctor but as a human being who believes humanity needs to be neutral for all, I am quite distraught over this. Imagine if the government gave the bailout to the taxpayers. Imagine if we deposited more money into the private sector and people. These folks when the spread is manageable or have a cure then they will spend that money back into the economy that desperately needs a lifeline. Imagine how that would help all the little business owners and individuals. Big corporations don't need bailouts. The people do.
So many different folks, so many different signs, so many different voices but we all cried the same. Regardless of which side you are on, we need help and we need it now.
(Saman Dadafshar is a San Diegan photographic journalist, specializing in the storytelling of life's greatest moments)