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Vicki Beechler

34; vegan 10 years; hometown Baton Rouge, LA


On the 2016 flood in Louisiana:


"It’s been really a nightmare situation.


"[My in-laws] are definitely middle class and their neighborhood, the trash piles are like…I grew up poor and I can’t help myself. I’m driving down the street and looking at people’s trash pile, like, ‘That’s still good! Why are they throwing that out?’ They got like 6 feet of water over there. At some point, you’re looking at everything and you just can’t deal with it. So what do you do? You just throw out everything, right? Well, there are people that come every day and dig through the trash piles to salvage stuff.  At some point, we were talking about it because everyone thought it was weird. I had to say out loud, ‘Hey, not everyone can afford to buy new stuff. They lost everything, too.’


"It’s been interesting to see that. Driving through the affluent neighborhoods and their trash piles are gigantic and there’s everything out there. Then going through the other neighborhoods that flooded just as bad and there’s hardly any furniture in the trash. It’s mostly drywall, ’cause they’re trying to save everything.


"In a country like America, it’s hard to wrap your mind around the fact that 20 minutes from you there are people who don’t have food or toothpaste."


Photo by Holly Feral

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