Photo contest!

Get your camera.  Stuff a big, BIG memory card into it, and move out smartly.

Your charge is to document American life as we live it today. With the demise of LIFE magazine, no one’s really making a good job of this on a regular basis and I’m a lousy photographer. It thus falls to you, Citizen.

Get some shots of our monumental engineering achievements, such as dams, locks, skyscrapers and such. Don’t overlook the vast technological achievements represented by military bases, nor the soaring architecture of our awe-inspiring jetports, government buildings and public monuments.

Document daily life as we live it here in America today. Memory is cheap, so shoot away! Take hundreds of pictures of police as they serve and protect during routine enforcement contacts. Record our brave national guardians of the Transportation Security Administration as they inspect travelers inside and out, making our children safe at the light touch of a finger inside their waistbands. For a lark, why not call in a marijuana complaint on your neighbor, then shoot a few candid action shots as the nearest SWAT kicks in her door? Old ladies are funny when they’re shot.

Use a big lens, so they know you’re there. There’s no sport in secret surveillance — besides, that’s reserved for the Authorities.

Longest documented federal sentence wins a valuable prize — unless, of course, someone is tortured or killed. That’s pretty much a de facto (or would that be de jure?) victory.

Oh, and the rules? Pictures must be posted to a publicly viewable site; American citizens only (sorry, dead end Ba’athists, cheeky Brits and Somali pirate wannabes); must be voting age or older; encouraged where prohibited by law.

C’mon. I dare ya.

Go out and make free.

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