Home > Uncategorized > These People Aren’t Homeless…

These People Aren’t Homeless…

These People Aren't Homeless...

  1. Anonymous
    September 26, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    The difference is that the hipsters will be gone within 24 hours and chances are, most don’t have a criminal history.. I’ll take hipsters over homeless any day.

  2. Mitch
    September 26, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    So, Anonymous, it’s OK to camp on the sidewalk if you don’t really need to camp, but if you need to camp because you have no place else to go, it’s not ok to camp. You must work at a bank.

  3. Anonymous
    September 26, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    Nah, I’m saying that comparing hipsters camping with homeless people camping is ludicrous on its face because the issues in play are dramatically different. That image is what’s known as a circle-jerk because anyone with the slightest amount of skepticism can see it’s not close to a fair comparison. That image only works for those already in the choir.

  4. Mitch
    September 26, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    The “issues in play” seem to me to be (1) whether or not it is legal for an individual to lay down and sleep on a public sidewalk; and (2) nothing else.

    The photo points out the difference in the way the law treats hipsters and the homeless. Yes, there are certainly additional differences between the typical hipster and the typical homeless person, most critically the amount of funds each has available to seek shelter. It’s these additional differences that account for the difference in treatment of the two classes of people for identical behavior. But I’m in the choir.

  5. Just Middle Finance
    September 26, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    The shoppers are protected under our most cherished Amendment of the Constitution; Freedom of Commerce. Protesters are stopping commerce, huge difference.

  6. September 26, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    You know, I’m kind of tempted here, having gotten article flow under fingers today when I should move on to other things.

    I recently read a great novel by John Varley, who has shown truly wonderful imagination across his speculative fiction over the years. This one is called Slow Apocalypse, and the only sf aspect comes in an early moment, when he invents a way that all the useful petroleum in the world could go away, effectively in a blink of an eye.

    The rest of the novel i found very well written indeed, and entirely engaging. It is about individuals adjusting and finding survival, amongst much that has the light turned towards it as morality. Morality is investigated as a needful concept.

    It is not an easy read at all ,and does not flinch at what gives advantage in various ways, and that what one may find from others which can again be on a spectrum according to time and threat felt, very much as some of those desert-tribe influenced westerns used to get more than a little into the gritty realities of isolated frontier towns.

    Where I am going with this, not being in any choir, is that I don’t think you get away from there being a spectrum of distinctions that we will find very necessary to be clear on, in anything talked about and acted on, which deals with human realities of want and desire.

    I remember when the same slum or homeless people that I had invited many a lunch and so forth with to understand, in Portland, Oregon during a time of my relative youth, a few years later threw up a number of their minority of large and aggressive panhandlers to literally try to intimidate money out of persons downtown.

    I could personally get them to reconsider with a look and a way of moving, in those days, but this wasn’t so at all for many, nor could it be; and in any case the threatening aspect was growing and real. I would say that I felt it entirely correct then that ordinances were passed to assure the police could deal with this, and that they were quite careful to do so fairly, meeting as they do with again the spectrum of people each day, and as they had been given the fair chance themselves.

    Not to think there is a need for police could look to the same town in the same decade, when very unexpected hate violence rapidly grew up out of the displeasure of what had been star middle-class-blue-collar neighborhoods before economics shifted hope, and the worst truly ensued. Just one example in a large world, but if you have lived in it, you will know there are times and places where what is fair definitely includes that ordinary persons not be accosted, and you’ll have an idea what it can take in a situation to assure this.

    You’re hearing why I don’t find myself a member of any political choir, on the subject we’re talking about especially, instead of much more personal and timely stories i could tell, and somehow halt before speaking several.

    I think the Portland example illuminates all I want to say here, that spectra exist, times of life exist, and that while I am very strong on fair treatment and what it and real communication can bring, I feel that the decision made for Arcata at this time may be judged fairly, but could be judged just as fairly in another instance quite differently.

    Ideals and rule-sets can be quite limited in dealing with a given present or becoming reality which doesn’t align with them, as much as they can be very important in creating that reality, which I realize is what several of you are concerned for here.

    I am with you in that way, a fairly inclusive ‘you’, and in fact am very interested, you’ll probably be aware.

  7. Ponder z
    September 26, 2012 at 6:12 pm

    The difference is the consumers aren’t bothering anyone, clean up their trash, conceal their dope smoking and other bad habits, use a restroom, sneak out of line to go home and take a shower, and are not protesting anything.

    Protesters and panhandlers have a way of wearing out their welcome.

  8. Just Watchin
    September 26, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    Narration really doesn’t seem to have much to do……

  9. September 26, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    Well, I do, actually.

    It’s just that for the present, conversation here has a value, and so is part of it.

    How it is.

  10. Mitch
    September 26, 2012 at 8:22 pm


    Great response, though of course none was needed. How it is. :)

  11. Dave Kirby
    September 27, 2012 at 8:41 am

    I suppose the thousands of people who spend the night on the sidewalks along Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena waiting for the Tournament of Roses Parade are engaged in B.F.O.. Blatant Floral Observation. I have a feeling Pasadena will not be enacting any ordinances to control the situation. The whole premise of this thread is bogus.

  12. Mitch
    September 27, 2012 at 8:47 am

    The thread highlights how deeply embedded classism is in our society. Activity that is just fine when engaged in by the middle class is criminal when engaged in by a homeless person.

  13. Just British Class
    September 27, 2012 at 11:00 am

    We had this problem in the late 1770’s when ingrate rabble scum started protesting the government in Boston, New York and all along the Eastern Seaboard. We sent in the troops with all the weapons they would need to clear out the scum, but they just kept coming. Eventually we left to pursue commerce elsewhere. Commerce is great, Americans protesting is bad.

  14. Jack Sherman
    September 27, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    “The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich, as well as the poor, from sleeping under the bridge.” (Anatole France).

    The uncomfortable truth is that law enforcement, public officials, the media and private industry are working overtime to ensure that any public displays (and reporting) of the homeless victims of unbridled job-exports, the child-laborers who manufacture most U.S. products, and those who dare to protest, are strictly controlled and effectively censored. If any media source were to accurately refer to America’s “imperial-economy”…someone might start to ask questions! “Where’s the cost/benefit analysis for the average U.S. family”?

    Thanks Mitch!

  15. September 27, 2012 at 9:32 pm

    “…classism is in our society. Activity that is just fine when engaged in by the middle class is criminal when engaged in by a homeless person.”
    Hear, hear!

  16. What Now
    September 27, 2012 at 11:30 pm

    Mitch :The thread highlights how deeply embedded classism is in our society. Activity that is just fine when engaged in by the middle class is criminal when engaged in by a homeless person.

    Certainly bears repeating as does Mr. Sherman’s assesment on the imperialist stage of AmeriKKa.
    Thank you both.

  17. Dave Kirby
    September 28, 2012 at 8:38 am

    The fact is that beggars make people insecure. In other cultures they are seen as a fact of life. Here we are not accustomed to their presence. Having worked on the main street of Garberville for the past 30 something years I have watched the passing parade of street people with interest. Right now we see a lot of “Scissor Drifters”. Young folks who come to make some money trimming pot. They are pretty much harmless though their sheer numbers and the number of dogs that accompany them puts off many. The term “homeless” is a political catch phrase that in most cases is not factual. Most of the year round locals who live on the street here are not without homes. There are a number of sub groups within the general population. Alcohol and other drugs are a major component in many of their lives. Mental illness is another factor among some. I call some of the transient young folks Jerry Garcia’s kids. They have a romantic view of being on the road. Economic class has little to do with their presence. Many come from middle class backgrounds.

  18. Mitch
    September 28, 2012 at 8:46 am


    OF COURSE alcohol and drug use and mental illness are major component of the problem. Do you really think that our society’s solution should be to turn our backs on these people?

    OF COURSE many of the younger transients come from middle class homes. Have you ever wondered how many have been thrown out of those homes or been forced out of their homes? Often by the upright schmucks who discover the kid is gay, or who are sexually or otherwise abusing them in the privacy of their upright middle-class home? If you were a seventeen year old on the street, would you announce to every stranger that you’d left home due to abuse, or would you spout the romance of the road?

  19. Dave Kirby
    September 28, 2012 at 11:55 am

    Mitch….I don’t think the majority of young drifters are running from trauma. I do think the economy is contributing to the problem. You can’t just tell people to “get a job!”anymore.
    As far as turning our backs on the problem. Back in the 90s I was the planning commissioner from this district. Part of the housing element of the general plan was a state requirement to address sheltering transients. We did some serious research looking for a working model that we could discuss. We didn’t find a single example of a workable housing scheme that addressed the requirement. The few attempts by other counties had all been failures. It was usually problems with booze and other drugs or the fact that gamers and predators start preying on vulnerable folks that required more resources than could be provided.

  20. Mitch
    September 28, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    Well, thanks. I’m glad you have tried to help. I don’t doubt that the biggest problem facing most people with mental illness and/or drug/alcohol problems is that they are all thrown into a single pool, and the hardest problems in the pool can overwhelm any practical attempt at helping those who could otherwise be helped.

    As you point out, though, the issue in dealing with the problems is one of resources that can be provided — in other words, every dollar that our society spends on other things is one dollar less that could be used to help the most vulnerable populations among us (ignoring, for the moment, the question of whether they are “deserving”).

    So as long as we are as mean-spirited as we have been in our society’s priorities — funding the world’s largest military and refusing to tax the wealthiest among us at normal historical rates — we will be in serious trouble. The young people we are failing today will not just disappear.

  21. Anonymous
    September 30, 2012 at 1:18 am

    Sharp increase in poverty and the crime, drug abuse and homelessness that accompanies it, has risen along with a generation of divestment in U.S. jobs, infrastructure, health care, housing, education and social services.

    We know the solutions, like the rest of the industrialized world that still invest in their human resources..

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