Oral Interview/Video Essay/Image Analysis-ML

The Citizens of South Bronx came together to publicly state that they were against the construction of the Fresh Direct Facility, and that moving forward with the project would go on to further harm the community.

               The composition of people in this picture is something I would like to note. Although Mott Haven is primarily African American and Latin American, the attendees featured in this picture demonstrate diversity among the protestors. They have chosen a local Priest to remain central in the image as a figure to rally around in the statement they are making against Fresh Direct. Using such an individual is a strong move considering they are figureheads to communities of both great wealth and low poverty and as such are highly relatable across all walks of life. In a metaphoric fashion, a lack of minorities in this picture also leaves the impression of those people having less of a say in the manner. Terribly, with communities of color they are more likely to experience environmental injustices and they struggle to be treated equally.

               The sunflowers on the locked gate are an important feature that are easy to overlook when quickly glancing at the image. These plants are very bright with their yellow color and yet they almost fall into the background by being drowned out by the industrial color pallet that dominates the image. Likewise, these plants do not simply grow in difficult areas. Without proper conditions, these beautiful plants will suffocate from poor air quality or wither away due to lack of nutrients and/or ground contaminants. Just like the plants, the children of the Bronx will struggle to grow in a healthy environment if the proper conditions are not met. They need to be nurtured, and Fresh Directs facility would stand in the way of that.

               The last point I would like to point out is the emptiness behind the gate. The plans were to construct a building on that very plot of land which would block the view from the entrance to the waterfront. New York is very compact as it is and having open areas is hard to come by in a commercial district such as the Bronx. Every piece of property has value and can be bought and sold for whatever purpose. A possible business means an influx of jobs within the community, and Mott Haven would be a prime candidate for places in need of such a benefit with their unemployment rates being so high. Yet regardless of this fact, the residents choose to attempt to block out the commercial world from occupying this open space.