Monday, March 31, 2008

mayor's plan for homeless: out of sight, out of mind

this is all you really need to know about the mayor's new plan to combat homelessness:

"The immediate goal is to get them out of Downtown so that citizens and visitors don't have to look at it," Ballard said last week.

remember, this is the guy who spent his mayoral campaign scaring people about how big bad property taxes would make them lose their homes. now we know how he feels about people who don't have homes: they need to get the hell out of his city, because he doesn't want to look at them.

aw, heck, here's a bonus quote:

"They're not all homeless," Ballard said. "Panhandlers are a sham. I think most people know that."

you see, not all panhandlers are actually homeless, therefore panhandling itself is a total sham! similarly, i ate a bad apple the other day,* which proves that all apples suck! i'll never eat an apple again!

* not really; virago is the apple eater. i'm more into oranges.


Anonymous said...

The panhandlers are a pain! Someone whould get a giant broom and sweep them all away! Maybe you should spend some time downtown.

stAllio! said...

my girlfriend lived downtown for two years. i know what it's like.

she also lived for a few years in san francisco—where it's 10x worse. maybe you should spend some time in a city with a real homelessness problem.

anyway, it's interesting that your solution is to treat these people as if they're dirt to be swept away. they're human beings, and deserve to be treated as such.

Anonymous said...

san francisco has the most visible homeless population in the country (or at least it did a few years ago, when i moved here). when i came to indy, i was struck by how few homeless people i saw, even in the heart of downtown -- and i lived one block from a salvation army service center.

no matter how much or how little money someone has, whether they're lucky enough to have a place to live or not, we're all people with feelings who deserve common respect. many, many people are one paycheck away from living on the street... there but for the grace of (deity) go you or i.

DJ Shiva. said...

As someone who has been homeless, but lucky enough to have a support system that meant I at least had a couch to crash on, I am appalled by the attitude that homeless people are just "things" to be swept out of sight, or stepped over as an inconvenience.

We need REAL solutions to homelessness, which includes real thinking about the nature and the cause of poverty, and some solutions that are based in decency and reality, instead of some BS upperclass snobbery.

In the current economic climate, there are SO many people just a paycheck or a medical emergency away from losing it all. According to a recent NY Times article, food stamp use across the country is skyrocketing, reaching record levels in some states. Are we going to continue to look at the poor and the homeless as if they are someone else and someone else's problem? Or are we going to realize that it's OUR problem, as a nation, and we can't just sweep people under a rug and expect things to get better.

I get panhandled all the time these days, but you know, I would rather sit in a room full of panhandlers, than a room full of heartless jerks who would rather ignore the reality of human suffering.

At least Ballard is showing his true colors right up front. Now I know who I am dealing with.