Alter Public Space

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In the essay “Black men and Public Space” by Brent Staples, he talks about how being a black man alters public space in a negative way. Altering public space is changing how a person, place, or thing makes you feel. It can be negative but it also can be positive. Some positive ways altering public space can be a friendly smile walking into a room, beautiful new constructions, and planting trees to better the environment. Most people go about their business, especially in a classroom. Some students have their faces buried in paperwork, some have their headphones on, some dozing off, or chatting with a friend. Most times it’s just a quiet room with blank stares waiting for the teacher to arrive. Usually when people’s eyes meet, especially people they don’t know, they look away. Its common and it happens every day, you don’t know that person so you go about your own business. Someone that walks into a classroom or any room for that matter with a big friendly smile on their face however is instantly noticeable. If you came in eye contact with that person smiling at you, most of the time your initial response is to smile back. Smiling is contagious and makes people feel good. Someone can walk into a dull room and enlighten it, changing the space with smiles. Another way altering space can be positive is when they build new beautiful constructions. There can be an empty plot next to a neighborhood that’s an eye sore. Left over used tires resides there as well as the neighborhood trash and some bits and pieces of crab grass. The people in the neighborhood decided to pitch in and turn it into the neighborhood park. Now kids could play, families could have picnics and people could walk their dogs. Everyone in the neighborhood is happy and that’s because they decided to alter public space. They changed that useless empty plot, into a useful beautiful neighborhood park. This can also go for new beautiful buildings. On campus at West Los Angeles College they are...
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