In a devastating story out of Brooklyn, NY, 25-year-old white man Matt Pollings is experiencing his first taste of feeling unsafe, simply by existing outdoors.
“I can’t even walk close to someone on the sidewalk or sit next to someone on a park bench without feeling the stares and the disdain. How am I expected to live peacefully like this?” said Matt, tears welling in his eyes.
Matt, who is also straight, cis, able-bodied, and male, went on to explain his newfound fears.
“This is the first time in history that a deadly and contagious disease has ravaged NYC,” said Matt. “And the first time working, traveling, even going to a restaurant has been totally impossible for a huge swath of the population.”
“I cannot believe that I have to live through something this difficult and ostracizing,” added Matt, who will never experience this again in his natural life. “People would rather walk in the road than pass me on a sidewalk.”
Matt’s friends see it slightly differently.
“When I’m walking down the street, best case scenario I feel uncomfortable and worst case I fear for my safety,” said friend Leisha Fortes, who is black. “But yeah, poor Matt can’t go to the bar or watch his sports.”
“Yeah, I’m sure I don’t need to detail my worries walking with my partner in public as a lesbian,” said Raven DeSoto. “Matt is losing his mind. The discomfort he’s feeling is something that plenty of people have to deal with every day. His privilege is showing, hard.”
But Matt is panicking, nonetheless. In fact, he’s escaped the big city to stay at his parents’ summer home upstate and has faced some judgment about it.
“I don’t understand why I’m getting shit for leaving the city,” said Matt. “Like, I moved to Brooklyn for the edgier lifestyle, not to actually suffer.”