Black and White Photography, Photography

“My Fellow Americans”


Here I go again getting up on a soap box and preaching, but when it comes to homeless people I just can’t help myself. In a country as wealthy as ours there is no excuse to even have one homeless person. We have wars on terrorism, wars on drugs, wars on super sized soft drinks, wars on everything except for those who are vulnerable and living on the street. On this particular day in Manhattan I was bundled up and freezing, it was about 15 degrees Fahrenheit and windy so I could imagine how cold he was. The first words out of any politician when running for office and making a speech is “My Fellow Americans”. Why are we getting immune to helping “Our Fellow Americans” ?

Fujifilm X20 – 1/220 @ f/2.8 – 28.4mm – ISO 100


34 thoughts on ““My Fellow Americans”

  1. LB says:

    Preach it, Joe!!!
    Just look at the fatigue on his face? His whole body is sunken down.
    This is an excellent portrait and unfortunately a reflection on so much of what is wrong in our nation … “the best nation on earth” … whatever!
    Thank you!


  2. homeless people don’t fall from the sky, they have their biography, have a dignity as you and me do, but all too often stray dogs are treated with more dignity as our fellow homeless. everyone deserves respect no matter what status he/she has and definitely, we should show a lot more civil courage and help anyone in need! too often maginalized people are caught in this situation without own fault…and this can happen faster than one think to any of us. thank you, joe.


    • Something really struck me about what you said Sirpa, stray dogs are often treated with more dignity and we should show a lot more civil courage. Thank you and have a great day πŸ˜€


  3. smackedpentax says:

    Very poignant photo Joe…we have the same ‘problem’ here in the UK (and in every other country)…people just care about one thing – themselves!


  4. Your poignant post make my heart ache. You can feel the hopelessness in that mans face. His humble attire must not keep in warm at all. It’s inhuman that anyone lives without hope or purpose. Whether due to addiction, mental health issues or just down on their luck it’s a reflection of a communities lack of organized resources. Denmark’s homeless rate is 0.1 % Maybe we should start emulating some of the success stories in the world? They’re obviously doing something right. In Edmonton, we are in year 3 of a 10 year plan to end homelessness and have already seen some success. Still there are over 2,000 people without a home or place to sleep every night, we have a long ways to go.


    • Thank you very much and the Denmark statistics are impressive. We should start emulating a lot of things from our European friends. I realize a lot of countries have the same problem but we don’t even try to solve the problem in the USA. It’s so great that Edmonton implemented a plan and you are seeing some success. Have a great day πŸ˜€


  5. Oh! I thought that was a selfie… Nah, kidding! πŸ˜€

    You’re so right Joseph. But the problem is that war on poverty doesn’t fill up bankers pockets.


    • After a long night of some Jack Daniels chasing it with Sam Adams it does look like me, LOL. You’re right my friend theres no profit for the fat cats having a war on poverty. Have a great night Meho πŸ˜€


  6. First of all, this is a beautiful photo. That said, I have a brother who is currently homeless. It gives me great anguish, however my family has had to cut him off. He has been a drug addict for many years now, and despite our efforts to help him, he has refused us. He has come to expect others to give him what he needs and wants, and when they don’t he steals from them. My family has lost thousands of dollars to him both from us giving, and from him stealing to support his habit. While I do agree that is unfortunate that our government does not focus nearly enough on what’s happening at home, it does need to be recognized that feeding money into a problem is not always the solution. In cases like my brother, homeless people are choosing the life they have, and they need to be the ones to change it. I recognize this story does not relate to all, and circumstances vary greatly. I pray for all those who are homeless, especially during the hot and cold months, and for the children who are not responsible for the situations they are in.


    • First of all thank you for commenting and I’m sorry to hear your brother has gone down that path. Once again rational people could talk about an issue and reason it out (unlike our Congress). You are correct we can’t just throw money at the problem that didn’t work out too well with public education. You are also correct that some homeless people have chosen to live the way that they do and that is also unfortunate. I would have to say it is my personal belief that the vast majority of homeless people are not choosing this lifestyle and if they had a choice would choose to live somewhere safe and warm. Why can’t our government open a dialog just like we are to work on an issue. We just seem to feed so much money into things that don’t benefit society that it is frustrating (corporate welfare for one) and $3000 toilet seats for the military. Thank you for your kind words on my photo and have a great day Sara πŸ˜€


  7. I am with you Joe! Breaks my heart to see homeless people. They have stories to tell and most of them not pleasant. It is unfortunate that there is not more focus on helping people within our own country. You and I can buy the homeless meals, give them a blanket, buy them shoes, but in the end, that isn’t what will get them off the street and into a safe environment. Many of these people as you know are Veterans who have served our country well beyond most of the politicians and yet they don’t have the support of our government once their tour of duty is complete. Great post. Great image that speaks a 1000 words. Blessings, Robyn


    • Isn’t that the truth Robyn. Thank you for your kind words, and you are correct, we can do everything in our power but the true solution begins with our government. This should be our number one priority. I am a firm believer in “Charity Starts At Home”. Have a wonderful day.


  8. there is not one solution, a solution that would come from altruism, while I agree about the blindness at home, the ability to think that it is someone else, someone in such an anonymous image that ‘needs’ our solutions, often it is the person next door, the one ‘we’ do not even look at every day as we go about our business


      • Thanks. I was probably too harsh by social standards to speak on it at all. However, I wasn’t even awake enough to pass on commenting until I had become more awake and less angry. I have been homeless twice. (but she doesn’t LOOK like a homeless person….blah blah)

        600 for a screw, which is wayyyyyyyyyyy more important that feeding a LAZY person–have we not noticed yet that our work ethic has in many ways always been false and yet is so engrained that our thinking and our solutions are polluted by it? You don’t have to answer, I’ll just wink and go have some tea.


        • Having an opinion on something is great and your comment was in no way harsh. Intelligent people discuss problems just as we are discussing the comments on my post, but at least we are talking about it, which is more than I can say about the way congress goes about their obligation to the American people. I just heard on the news this morning that the USA is pledging 1 billion dollars in aid to the Ukraine without even having a discussion about it. I have nothing against the Ukrainians but why can’t we give the same sense of urgency to the real world problems we have at home. All we hear is we have no money to fix the infrastructure, or we have no money for health care but we can pledge 1 billion dollars in foreign aid. Who’s kidding who. Thank you for commenting Elisa πŸ˜€


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