The sewers of Columbia


Ever wandered what if someone lives in the sewer below you? How about what live is like below the surface of the street? Well it is obviously not clean or good for you. In Columbia there are people who live in the sewers. They carry no flashlights and have no way of producing light. Beds have to be above the water level and are usually supported by wood that floats down the sewers. Living down there is tough; the residents of the sewer have to be ready for anything down there. Women have to show female masculinity or face tragic consequences. Whole families live down in the sewers and face problems. For example, one man lost his wife because a flash flood wiped her away and she was not able to get to the shore. Another problem of the sewer is drug addicts. A lot of the people in the sewers do drugs because they feel like it is all they have. Once the drug supply is low, they resort to stealing whatever the drug addicts can get their hands on to sell for more drugs.

With all the troubles facing them, one has to wonder why they live down in the sewers in the first place. The streets are not safe because of the death squads, who are hired by the government or rich people to get rid of the homeless problem. In the daylight, the homeless hierarchy may seem nonexistent, but that is due to them living in the sewers. The homeless people used to be safe in the sewers because the death squads would not follow them down into its depths. The death squads are getting more risky because some are going in the sewer.  For example, in the beginning of the movie people would run away from the crew filming them because the sewer people thought the camera crew were the death squads.

The homeless population of Columbia has become a marginalized identity because they are not being represented at all. The video was the only one i found on the subject with any good information and it was made in 2007. In a way the homeless population is being symbolically annihilated because the death squads are killing them. Still, the people down in the sewer are strong, smart and resourceful. They hear the stories of people being killed and know to stay away from there. Until the homeless can live on the streets, safely, they will continue to be on the nonrecognition side of being represented.

Here is the video i was referring to. Note: it is kinda long.


One thought on “The sewers of Columbia

  1. Your posting suggests that media often fails to do enough to bring attention to social problems–this is a good point. On the one hand, these wouldn’t be the types of topics that would be in popular media–but you might expect news and journalism to do a better job with these topics. Why do you think news/journalism media are also biased?

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