It is easy to romanticize poverty, to see poor people as inherently lacking agency and will. It is easy to strip them of human dignity, to reduce them to objects of pity. This has never been clearer than in the view of Africa from the American media, in which we are shown poverty and conflicts without any context.
I was a business major at the University of Richmond, and after I graduated, I took a job at a corporate ad agency. I had comedic dreams, but I also had a realistic look at what I had to do when I left school: maybe I'm funny, but maybe I'm one of a hundred thousand funny people, you know?