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2021 Man of the Year: Travis Curry

Screenshot of New York Times, Sept. 7, 2021
• December 30, 2021 5:00 am

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The world is full of haters and losers.

We all know the type. Miserable people who want to drag the rest of us down to their level and won't rest until they do. They nag, scold, and harangue those who dare to live boldly, people who make full use of their unalienable right to pursue happiness.

People like Travis Curry.

The 34-year-old freelance photographer was roundly mocked after he appeared in the pages of the New York Times to bemoan the lapse of federal unemployment benefits. "To just cut people off, it's ridiculous and it's unethical and it's evil," said Curry, bravely refusing to cower before the social media mob that told him to end his photography dreams and take one of the 300,000 jobs available in New York City.

This is a man. Rather than follow the thoughtless hordes into a lifetime of wage slavery, our hero is willing to sacrifice ridiculous things like health insurance to pursue a higher art: taking weird pictures of men with nipple rings.

Some might say that Curry is selfish for expecting hard-working taxpayers to subsidize his photographic aspirations and proclivity for purple hair dye. But no. When he's not busy in the darkroom, Travis Curry is as civic-minded as they come.

"If we can't buy food or go to local businesses because we don't have money to live in New York," he asked the Gray Lady, "how will New York come back?"

How indeed! It was people like Curry and his $428 weekly government handout who kept the Big Apple afloat during the long, hard pandemic. In the three months since federal unemployment lapsed, the city has gone to hell in a handbasket.

Sure, people are moving back to New York at higher rates than before COVID struck. Yes, the city regained nearly half of the jobs it lost during the pandemic. And, yes, tourism, tax revenue, Wall Street profits, and Subway ridership are all up, but that is beside the point!

And don't bother pointing out that Curry has a college degree and two years of retail experience. Don't you dare say that he could easily apply for one of the 11 million jobs available in the United States and earn a living while pursuing photography as a hobby.

That's just hateful. Logic doesn't matter if you're courageous enough to follow your dream.

Travis Curry is many things. He's an adequate photographer, a prolific retweeter, and a proud fat liberationist. Well, today he can add another bullet to the résumé he's so bravely refusing to send out: Washington Free Beacon Man of the Year.

Published under: Man of the Year