Friday, February 21, 2014

About those "scary" Black men of Anacostia

Today I was chatting with some good friends on Good Hope Rd SE and I had a thought: "How would they look to people who didn't know them?"

What stereotypes would come to mind? What would strangers assume about this group of Black men gathered on a street in Anacostia? What assumptions would they make about their stance, their clothing, their color?

Would their presence generate feelings of intimidation or fear? Would someone be uncomfortable walking past them on a public street? Would a visitor tweet about feeling "unsafe" on the streets of Anacostia or jokingly proclaim their "escape" the mean streets of Southeast?

(l-r) Jehiel Oliver of AYA Consulting,  Karim Abodye of Perfect DPI, and Jessie Johnson of Stockbridge Consulting

And little would they know that each man in this photo has at least a Bachelor's degree; owns their own business and chose to base their business out of Anacostia. Not because they had to, but because they wanted to.

Spread love, not fear.

#SoutheastLove


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5 comments:

Anonymous said...

What is your point here?

Anonymous said...

Yes, these guys aren't too scary. Can you say that about everyone else you could have taken pictures of that day? Would you even try to take pictures of everyone on the street that day?

It's getting better all the time, and it's not nearly as bad as most of the city imagines - but you've got to admit, it's still pretty sketchy.

Anonymous said...

personally I find themn all sexy especially the bald one. would like to patronize his buisness

Brian said...

Sketchy? Really? Hmm. I'll get back to that.
I think her point is that you and others have made a broad generalization about a less wealthy neighborhood yet you probably don't know the people that live, work, and hang out there. If you knew them you would find that they are friendly, good people, because they are. They are often business owners as well.
Here's a definition of sketchy: not thorough or defined. I'll use it in a sentence. You're knowledge of the people of Anacostia is sketchy. Sketchy is a word that reflects a user's lack of knowledge about a situation often to express the user's fear or unease. So I supposed you used it appropriately. Be more specific in saying what you don't like about Anacostia. Using vague terms such as sketchy spread ignorance, fear, and hate. That was the blogger's point as she referenced other such statements on social media.

Anonymous said...

well, two of the three biz's are government contractors. anacostia is a designated HUBZone. Small biz's (w/ gsa schedules) located in HUBZone's = access to gov't contracts. not knocking anyone, if you're starting a small biz catering to govt clients, setting up in anacostia is smart.