Two friends are driving in a late-model Toyota Corolla across Los Angeles on Wilshire Boulevard. ROBERT: Where are we going?
DAVE: I don’t know. I thought we would just drive along Wilshire. ROBERT: Why?
DAVE: I don’t know. I thought it would be fun. Have you ever driven along Wilshire before? Except to go from point A to point B? ROBERT: No.
The two friends drive along in silence. ROBERT gazes at the sidewalk, interested in the activities that he passes by. ROBERT: You know what?
ROBERT: This city is really sad. There is no one around. No one walks on the streets. DAVE: Bums. Bums walk along the streets.
ROBERT: They don’t really count, do they?
DAVE: (A beat). Why would ‘bums’ not count? They are people, just like you and me. They deserve respect just as any other person within society. This is one of the major problems within society. It is not just the point of ‘bums’ not counting per se, but that we think about and construct individuals by their group memberships. People are not defined by their individual characteristics but rather how they appear to others. ROBERT: Yes, but they don’t really do anything besides beg for money. DAVE: That’s not the point. The point is that people are people, regardless if they are gay, straight, Mexican, Russian, Canadian, a Tea Partier, a Liberal, or a bum. All people should have equal rights and protections regardless of their group membership because all people have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. To classify a bum as someone that does not count denies them these rights. It really sickens me that we still live in an ‘individualistic’ society that continues to describe people by physical characteristics. You’re part of the younger generation – you should be part of the solution, not continue stereotypes of individuals. ROBERT: Yeah, OK. I guess.
The two friends drive along in an awkward silence. They pass through the West Side and enter the mid-city...
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