The homeless have taken to the streets of Washington D.C. (I know, I know, bad joke) in protest of the treatment that the Katrina victims have received. From $2000 credit cards to free gas and housing, the victims of Katrina have received some support, sure. Do I feel sorry for the homeless? Sure somewhat, but they never seem to actually do anything to resolve their situation.
Advocates say the homeless have noticed -- and many resent -- the difference in perception and treatment. "Local homeless people are saying, 'Nobody cares about us -- we were here all the time,' " said Imagene Stewart, who has 17 homeless families from the area at her House of Imagene in Northwest Washington. "For Katrina people, they find money. We've been out here begging for years."
Several homeless people have put their concerns on public display, in a small encampment on a corner of 15th Street NW near McPherson Square. Propped up against a grocery cart filled with clothing is a big sign that says, "Mayor Williams, Help Our Homeless First!!!"
"We're all a paycheck away from disaster, and I feel for those Katrina people," said Andrew Davis, 41, a homeless man who was sitting in a folding chair at the site. "But the homeless people in this city are treated like second-class citizens. What does that say about our nation's capital? Something's wrong with this picture."
Get out of that chair and get to work! When you're constantly bugging people on the street for money, making people feel a little nervous -- especially women -- as you follow them down the street what kind of response do you expect?
I'll help the homeless...as soon as they start helping themselves.
The handout brigade is in full swing.
Tipped by: Michelle Malkin
I expect many homeless people have some mental issues of varying degrees, so it might not be that "off the wall" to suggest that an organized program which offers job training *and* assistance with their mental issues could possibly help. The problem, I think, would also to be the other thing that I think plagues a lot of homeless - drug & alcohol abuse, maybe requiring a halfway-house/supervised living type arrangement.
The problems then would be the folks just using the system for a place to sleep, and the drain on the taxpayer dollar. For the latter, I'd imagine the taxpayer already pays a bit for shelters, and I'm sure the police are often used to disperse homeless, so a bit more to reduce the numbers probably wouldn't be that big a deal. Also, job vocation could be offered in public-service sector jobs (i.e., janitors at local government buildings) with perhaps no or limited pay during training to offset the costs.
Just a thought, one I'm sure has been brought up before and more eloquently.
Posted by: Malnurtured Snay on September 16, 2005 10:30 AM
Why is it that people, when confronted with the possibility that someone else might be getting something better than what they are getting, wants to ruin it for the other person? It doesn't help them at all, but they feel like no one should get anything unless they do too. These people can't possibly believe they are going to be showered with money just because they complain about the Katrina victims, yet they still complain, just to screw someone else over.
Posted by: Josh on September 16, 2005 05:28 PM
Josh, it hardly has to do with claiming Katrina victims shouldn't receive aid. It has simply brought to the surface a certain hypocisity in this country - many people displaced economically, often for medical reasons, out in the open, visible every day.
The great generousity of this country seems to make itself known only in instances of dramatic catastrophe, but we ignore the everyday suffering. Excuses such as "it's their own fault," "it's not the role of government," or in Mike's logic "I think there is ample evidence to conclude that helping the homeless causes them to multiply." (wtf!?!)
Posted by: Frank on September 18, 2005 04:53 PM