Beauty in the Shadow of the Baltimore Riots
On Monday, April 27, 2015, while driving past Mondawmin Mall in Baltimore, traffic froze up as I watched riot-clad police officers disembark from a bus on the Mall parking lot. The parking lot began to fill up with students, mostly from the famous Frederick Douglass High School, my alma mater. I found out later that one of the reasons that students were gathering on the lot was because they were not allowed to get on the subway, as they typically did, every school day. It is no coincidence that the violence that began on the parking lot and the mall, coincided on the same day of the funeral of Mr. Freddie Gray, a Black American that died while in police custody.
I sat there for about 20 minutes, very nervous in my car, while waiting for police to allow traffic to flow again, watching heavily armed police face off angry students that seemed MUCH more interested in getting home than starting any trouble. Watching the news coverage showing the escalation of the situation, my heart was broken by the poor coverage and misrepresentation of how this whole tragic situation began.
As things settled in Baltimore, I began looking for those things I love about Baltimore and rediscovered Druid Hill Park with my camera, a beautiful and serene place of my childhood that is within walking distance of all the violence that happened on that day for the entire world to see.
This project is my effort to show the world how much Beauty Lies in the Shadow of the Baltimore Riot!