December 30, 2008
Your Turn: America '08
The NYT 2008 Year In Pictures collection has eleven non-campaign photos representing “The Nation.” Four offer natural disasters. Two are memorial pictures (one 9/11 related, the other featuring an Iraq war veteran). There is one scandal shot, of Rod Blagojevich.
The other three could be characterized as “launch” pictures. One showcases a space shuttle take-off. The other two, presented back-to-back in the slide show — juxtapose a lesbian wedding in West Hollywood (invalidated several months later by Prop 8) with female members of a Texas Mormon sect arrested for polygamy, jumping up and down on a trampoline.
As snapshots framing the year, I’m wondering what you see the pictures saying, if anything, about gay rights, women, tolerance, religion, California, Texas and/or the cultural in general.
(image 1: Monica Almeida/The New York Times. caption: A wedding in West Hollywood CA in June after the state’s highest court legalized same-sex marriage. Five months later, voters approved an amendment to the State Constitution that bans the marriage. image 2: Stephanie Sinclair/VII Network, for The New York Times. caption: In July, members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints played outside their home in New Braunfels, Tex., three months after the breakaway Mormon sect’s ranch in Eldorado, Tex., was raided by the state authorities)