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“Man In The Hood” — Cultural Differences ! Photo by Samuel E. Warren Jr.

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“Man In The Hood” — Cultural Differences !

Photo by Samuel E. Warren Jr.

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“The Man In The Hood” 

The Man In The Hood steps toward me.  I take a couple of steps backward.  My finger keeps pressing down on the camera shutter.  I hear the shutter clicking  away.  I feel the echo of my heartbeat in my ears. 

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People stand on the sidelines and watch “The Man In The Hood” walk by.  “The Reporter Within” pushes me out of the crowd and into the path of the approaching man.  I zoom in and start clicking off photos of the approaching man.  I keep stepping back to keep my distance and try to frame the shot, so that the man seems to walk at you.  I slow my back steps to try to get the image in my mind into the digital media card in my camera.  I had forgotten the focus on the zoom lens of my camera, so, when I looked through the viewfinder and his eyes suddenly looked into mine – an uneasy feeling went through my body and I got out of the way to let “The Man In The Hood” walk past me.

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In the United States, a man in a hood, is a dark symbol of evil, violence, terrorism and hatred that is associated with the Ku Klux Klan.  The KKK promotes a racist view of the world that rejects immigrants and religions that are not Protestant.  In the Republic of the Philippines, this man in the hood, was one of the actors in the Holy Week activities of the Palo Cathedral.  The irony is the man in this costume is promoting Catholicism and Christianity. The moral to the photo and the story is the powerful symbols of one nation’s culture may have a similar symbol with a completely different meaning in another nation’s culture.  Photos by Samuel E. Warren Jr.

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