This month the Denver VOICE is conducting its biennial reader survey. Even if this is the first time you’ve ever purchased the VOICE, please take the survey on pages 11 and 12 (you can complete it via our website too). Your answers will help guide us as we think about ways in which the VOICE can grow, and any feedback you can provide about your interactions with VOICE vendors helps us when we apply for grants.
Our March photo feature and cover story examines the concept of "skin deep." Photographer Steven Burton took photos of ex-gang members, and then photoshopped away their tattoos to create new portraits of them. Many of the men photographed for the project were clients of Homeboy Industries, a nonprofit in L.A. that helps people who are previously incarcerated and formerly gang-involved.
The men photographed for the project had some strong and emotional reactions to seeing themselves without their tattoos. Their statements are printed alongside their photos on pages 8 and 9.
We all make judgments about other people based on their appearances. At the VOICE, we're particularly conscious of how this fact affects people experiencing homelessness, and we actively work against it. But it's easy to forget how deep-rooted some of our other biases are. A story like "Skin Deep" is a powerful reminder of the human stories we dismiss when we pass judgment on others. ■