I thought I might take a hike & do some photography during this time of quarantine, I’d really like to get outdoors. But I’m staying put instead. There is a petroglyph site near the Phoenix metro area. The trailhead is in a neighborhood. I figured I’d drive to Phoenix, park at the trailhead, hike one mile to the site & photograph the petroglyphs. Easy. Drive in the car alone, do the hike alone keeping six-plus feet away from anyone I might meet along the way. Hike back to the car, drive home alone. Easy & safe. The hike would give me some much-needed fresh air outdoors, and the new photos would give me something to work on while ‘social-distancing.’
But then I saw a video online of a woman who ‘violated’ the quarantine & went swimming alone in a hotel pool. The cops came, dragged her out of the pool, beat her up & arrested her. Not the best way to deal with the situation but not surprising in the least. That made me think of the ‘what-ifs.’ What if some asshole Arizona cop or sheriff decided I shouldn’t be there? Trump has already emboldened every redneck ‘authority’ figure in America, now with this pandemic, the cops are pretty much unlimited (like beating up the hotel swimmer). Do I need to risk arrest, detention or potentially being killed by a cop because I went for a hike during a ‘pandemic?’ Gun sales are up too. What if some local resident redneck decided I was ‘dangerous’ and shot me? (Rednecks do think guns are the solution to all problems.) Or, what if Fearless Leader Trump or Governor Douchebag makes some ‘declaration’ while I’m out & I can’t get home?
These may be extreme concerns, but they’re not outside the realm of possibility. So far the Trump response to the coronavirus has been one giant fuckup with a pack-o-lies topped off with a big pile of fear. Only a fool trusts ‘the authorities’ today.
As much as I’d like to TRY to live a ‘normal’ life during these times I have to consider the dangers of BOTH the virus and ‘authorities’ actions because of it.
So I’m staying home & I’ll be a studio photographer for the foreseeable future.
AUTHORITARIANISM FRIGHTENS ME MUCH MORE THAN THE CORONAVIRUS.