Portraits Of Boston: Don't Judge


“The most important thing is to not judge others. So many people look at someone with tattoos or piercings or certain clothes and immediately judge them. Our society is all about control. But life is all about tolerance and understanding.”

“Have you ever caught yourself judging people based on their appearance?”

“Of course. I have to remind myself daily to not do so. You have to work on these things.”

“When did you start to dress the way you do?”

“All my life. My parents tried to stop me from wearing hats. They made me wear these very plain hats to church and I refused. As soon as I got on my own, I started wearing wild hats. I love hats. I have over 100 of them. But the other day I met a woman who had over 300!”

“Have you ever been on the receiving end of judgmental attitudes?”

“Oh, yes. People look at my hats and think I’m crazy, or they think that just because I’m overweight I’m stupid. I’m a professor; I’ve taught for 40 years. I’m not stupid, I’ll tell you that much. Tomorrow I’m going to get an Affiliate Intellectual Freedom Award for my efforts against book censorship.

Now, I’ll tell you what we shouldn’t tolerate. We shouldn’t tolerate homelessness; we shouldn’t tolerate hunger; we shouldn’t tolerate poverty. People who want a job should have a job, and we better raise the minimum wage!”

Portraits of Boston is a project of independent photographer Ivan Velinov. He is regularly sharing some of his favorite portraits with WBUR. Visit his website to see the hundreds of portraits he has taken on the streets of Boston.

This program aired on November 26, 2013. The audio for this program is not available.


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