Photo Friday: The Lot at the Liz Under Construction & 40 Years of Compassion, Washington, DC USA

2018.02.04 LizLot Under Construction, Washington, DC USA 2317
2018.02.04 LizLot Under Construction, Washington, DC USA 2317 (View on Flickr.com)

This week’s photograph was taken on historic 14th Street Northwest, in Washington, DC, USA (of course). It’s this historic because this is what the building looked like in 1942:

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Washington, D.C. Automobile store on 14th Street which has stock of frozen cars, May 1942 8c26601u-266 (View on Flickr.com)

There’s a lot of history between 1942 and 2018, including the destruction of this street following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., another destruction following a drug epidemic, and then another, of the LGBTQ community terrorized by HIV and a medical and public safety community who ignored their suffering.

An important exception was Whitman-Walker Health, celebrating its 40th year this year, and received support from actress Elizabeth Taylor, whose namesake medical center operated in this building, and will, again.

Liz is memorialized just a few blocks away in recognition of the fact that she didn’t walk away:

Photo Friday: Thank you Liz Taylor in Watercolor, Shaw Neighborhood, Washington, DC USA

Although Taylor is no doubt a alluring figure to look at, there is a deeper meaning behind the mural. The mural is meant to pay respects to the late actress for her foundation’s generous support of the Whitman-Walker Health Center, which helped to prevent the spread of AIDS and provided treatment to those affected by HIV/AIDS.

I still hear stories of the way human beings were treated and I am incredulous – both by the hostility they faced in a world that didn’t want them to exist, and the compassion they faced when they sought treatment here. Both have shaped a generation of physicians and nurses, especially mine 🙂 .

Additional photos of the building are below, and more information about the art and cultural events surrounding the rejuvination of this community treasure: The Lot at The Liz – Whitman-Walker Health

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