This year the Navajo Nation got a grant/donation that allowed them to purchase $25,000 worth of frozen turkey from Wal Mart here in Gallup. That's a lot of turkey. The assignment was vague, only thing I was told was to go to Wal Mart and get photos of people picking up the turkeys. It turned out that the turkeys were being picked up in large quantities to be distributed at various chapter houses across New Mexico, Arizona and up into Utah.

This year the turkeys were almost all going to agencies to be prepped and served for Thanksgiving, rather than passed out to individuals to cook on their own. The reason? Because when they have handed out the frozen birds to families the following weekend has seen a large number of frozen turkeys for sale at area flea markets. As I have said before, poverty is a way of life out on the reservation.

The annoying thing about the assignment? I had been in and out of the store several times to talk to employees and the assistant manager. I had my Kata camera bag and two bodies over my shoulders. The reporters were in the building talking to the program directors. Everything was fine. I walked around the building to the loading dock to get my photos, and then as I am leaving a plain dark car pulls up next to me, and a plain clothes loss prevention employee gets out and starts questioning me about what I am doing. He tells me that "They don't allow no cameras on Wal Mart property." I responded that I was leaving, and had already been in contact with their management, and that was that. I presume he went and checked, but what was he going to do at that point. I really had the urge to push the issue and ask them how any customers were supposed to purchase any of the photographic and video equipment they sell since having one in your possession ist verboten.

When will people learn - PHOTOGRAPHY IS NOT A CRIME
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