This is not the America I have known

83

By Chuck Woodbury
ROADSIDE JOURNAL
This picture originally ran in The Denver Post. It’s a homeless camp right across a park from the Colorado state capitol. The story was about how the residents were being evicted in part because of a rat infestation caused by human, animal and food waste.

Can you look at the photo and not be angry that this is America? I have personally seen similar scenes many times. Driving from central Oregon to central California a few weeks ago, I repeatedly saw homeless camps along the road — and not just “tent” camps. I have seen just as many RV camps, where those with a tiny bit of money can somehow acquire an RV, most often old, beat up and filthy.

I know the comments to this essay will range from sympathy for these people to outright anger. If you comment, please be civil. To me, whether your politics lean left or right, this should not be acceptable.

RV camp near Washington State capitol.

THIS IS NOT THE AMERICA where I grew up. Heaven knows, there has been poverty for decades. I remember driving through the Deep South fresh out of college and noticing mansions next door to tar paper shacks, most of them occupied by poor black families. I’ve seen ghettos in big cities.

But I grew up in suburban Los Angeles, where everything was new and there was no evidence of poverty anywhere near me. It was Mayberry.

Maybe what has changed now is that evidence of extreme poverty is right square in my middle-class face. It’s everywhere. Perhaps I am noticing it now because it’s impossible to ignore.

I can’t even begin to know what needs to be done, but I believe something is horribly wrong.

At this very moment, I am just venting based on my disgust at seeing the photo from Colorado. I know this is not about RVing, but sometimes I just need to climb on my soapbox and scream!

##RVT931

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Deborah Stidham
7 months ago

Why vent if you have no viable solution? Is it to incite others to vent or get out of control, possibly harming others out of frustration that “things aren’t the way they used to be!” In every period of time society changes. Do something positive to help the situation, get to know people or offer a viable solution, don’t just gripe like an old cranky person that doesn’t lift up others, only tears them down. Cheer up!

CandaceCB
7 months ago

Here in Los Angeles County politicians keep referring to tent cities as a “housing” issue….as though the homeless all have 9 to 5 jobs and just can’t afford the high rents. Well, California does have a high cost of living, but that’s not what’s causing those tent cities. It’s drug addicts, alcoholics, grifters, illegals, criminals, and the mentally ill (who frequently attack pedestrians).

The impact on the quality of life for citizens here is evident. Police stations located inside shopping malls in Van Nuys. Guard towers in the parking lots at Magic Mountain theme park in Santa Clarita. Six-foot iron fencing around homes and apartment buildings, backed up by seriously aggressive guards dogs. Personal care items – like soap and cosmetics – kept behind locked glass doors at most of the Walmarts. Outbreaks of typhus and other third-world diseases downtown.

I have to be here part of the year for work, but I just shake my head in wonder at what the voters in California continue to put up with. In the last week I’ve overhead 5 people saying they were done with California and preparing to leave the state, but leaving doesn’t do anything to remove the politicians whose policies have turned this beautiful state into a sewer.

Alvin
8 months ago

Chuck I feel the pain, I feel the anger, I feel the loss, – everything of which you speak and lament losing what we had in a more civilized era you and I grew up in.

It is absolutely no different in Canada, the land of a catch and release the criminal – judiciary.

In Lethbridge Alberta Canada where I live, I’m next door to a super drug club house (here called the Supervised Consumption Site – SCS – with staff of over 100 people, nurses and paramedics etc)) with the highest drug usage per capita (673 client visits per day) of any country in the world. The nearest was Bern Switzerland with 150/200 visits per capita per day.

This statistic was established in May 2019 during the International Harm Reduction Conference in Portugal. The harm reduction industry has grown into a multi million dollar travesty all funded by the taxpayer. 100%!
In my view Americans should be plenty pleased with a President in the wheelhouse who understands the need to control massive illegal (or legal) migration into your country – he knows no one can sustain the onslaught forever. Neither America nor Canada can feed, clothe, shelter and educate etc etc the world. Americans already welcome 1,000,000 folks from other countries each year- THROUGH LEGAL CHANNELS!! . You folks are generous, welcoming and kind by any measure.

Canada one tenth the population of your country allows 350,000 legally , and also WITH ARMS WIDE OPEN as many as can sneak in under the radar. There’s PICTURES ON YouTube SHOWING smiling Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers assisting illegals across the porous border between New York State and Quebec!

Like America we cannot continue this travesty either but we will as we’ve just re-elected a clown running the asylum, whose is 100% sympathetic to illegal immigration, and he’s got a brand new four year mandate. Ugly Ugly!!!!!!!!

If its any consolation, Chuck. It isn’t only America going down the tubes fast , parts of Canada are too. My town of 100,000 being the poster child for it. How sad!

cee
7 months ago
Reply to  Alvin

Surprised and saddened you chose to use the subject of HOMELESSNESS to go rant about your political views. To correct one of your statements… The majority of Americans are NOT pleased with Donald Trump! You said it, “How sad”!!

Alvin
7 months ago
Reply to  cee

Sad indeed you can’t feed born and bred Americans including a very large number of those who had their legs blown off protecting American values and you then still , (by what I read into you) seem OK with uncontrolled migrations over your borders.

Yup, sad very sad, but on this end not surprised at all. And like it or not this is political very much affecting how we folks wishing to enjoy our hard earned senior years on the trail RVing, the highways and byways – can do so in peace. Most of us are taxed up the ying-yang, supporting all the crap…………and the problem keeps exploding.

Chuck raised the issue because it is political, and in a plethora of ways it is affecting his ability to fully enjoy the America he once knew! As is it mine, and it will not go away with ones head in the sand, or somewhere else!

Bryan Barlow
7 months ago
Reply to  Alvin

Trump is only banning Muslims and South Americans (primarily Mexicans) from immigrating to America, not any other races. Sure, he’s “handling” immigration, but on a racist basis. Please get your facts straight.

Mike Mills
8 months ago

Few alive today have experienced hard times like the Depression or the world wars. We have become so soft and oh, so very sensitive that we accept and even reward the sloth and abominable conditions you describe by making no demands of the recipients of our benevolence. Although it would never fly today, here is the wording of a notice placed prominently in Yuma, Arizona by local law enforcement on December 7, 1905: “Every idle man, hobo and mack (woman chaser) found in Yuma 24 hours from this date will be locked up and put on the rock-pile (hard labor). Get out of town or take the consequences.” I don’t think they were kidding. Maybe this is a little draconian, but what would be wrong with a little tough love, like maybe a work requirement of some kind? (Document mentioned is displayed in the Yuma Territorial Prison Museum, Yuma, Arizona.)

Ed D.
8 months ago
Reply to  Mike Mills

Bingo. You hit the nail on the head. Good post.

Gray
8 months ago
Reply to  Mike Mills

To absolutely extend the logic of that “tough love” proposal, how about beginning with unemployed ne’er-do-wells. Anyone out of work beyond 90 days will be placed by state authorities in a state-sponsored work gang, 40 hours per week, to labor on public infrastructure projects. In lieu of pay, dormitory housing and meals will be provided. Sexes will be segregated into men’s and women’s facilities; families with children will not be exempt. Children will become wards of the state, held until A) parents find gainful employment OUTSIDE the state system; or B) children are relocated to suitable foster caregivers.

Homeless people will be “enrolled” in the same program; work and dormitory housing will be the same as previously described. Same goes for other drifters, lay-abouts, vagrants, and bums.

In addition to the 40-hour labor requirement, another 20 hours per week after work hours and on weekends will be devoted to “re-education” to instill proper work ethics, drug and substance abuse rehabilitation, and other social reformation.

Costs of the program will be recovered from future taxes and fees on the work-camp enrollees and their extended families as they are located and garnished by state officials.

A suitable program title/motto would be that found on World War II-era labor camps found over the entrance gate (translated from the original German): “Work Will Set You Free.”

(No, I absolutely DO NOT propose this solution; but it does seem to be a logical extension of the “make them work or let them suffer” attitudes expressed in the majority of posts in this thread.)

Wolfe
7 months ago
Reply to  Gray

See, that hyperbole is the problem — a rational and logical solution was presented and an irrational “extension” is presented as if it were logical. As one of the people suggesting a CONSENTUAL work-for-welfare program, I advocated for KEEPING charity/welfare, and providing an HONORABLE way to work up and out of the assistance. Nothing was forced or draconian, IMHO, because at the times I’ve needed help I’ve ASKED for programs like that. Give me honest work, let me earn enough to live UNcomfortably on while I establish something better. The program I suggested is pretty much self-supporting realtime, not a handout — any welfare I’d get is already being given out blindly without any productive benefit, so I’m just adding value INto the system of society getting something for their benevolence. I like the idea of helping your fellow man when he’s down, and I like the idea of feeling I produced something for the pay I received. Again, I don’t propose anything I wouldn’t participate in when needed — guaranteed work seems like a great safety net to me.

Gene Cheatham
7 months ago
Reply to  Mike Mills

Well put, Mike. The reality of the situation is every metropolitan area having these problems have been controlled, sometimes many decades, by very liberal Democrats. Laws made and laws ignored enticing and inviting swarms of homeless is the matter. Instead of pouring more dollars into a pot of money, poorly managed, the root of the problem needs dealt with. Mental health issues, drug and alcohol addicted need the hard work of dealing with. Some that are on the street in such condition want to be there, refusing help. I back this statement as it is pretty much the exact words of my county sheriff and social workers I know.
One big help … stop voting these lousy people back in office.

Alvin
7 months ago
Reply to  Gene Cheatham

Gene , throughout Canada as far as I’m aware the, addict/loafer/ bum gets to determine whether or not he or she will accept help. I think the day should be near when the people who finance it all to the tune of billions of dollars every year get to decide when, why, where and to whom the help is doled out to!

Alvin
7 months ago
Reply to  Mike Mills

Absolutely Mike Mills!

Debbie PJ
8 months ago

So agree with Drew~ and if it isn’t drugs it is mental health. I don’t believe anyone benefits from a handout but from hands up…we need to require treatment and also community service jobs in return for a safe place to stay.

Gray
8 months ago

WA State Governor Jay Inslee was reported this week as being “concerned” about the growing homeless problem, especially evident in & around King County (Seattle) and even the state capitol, Olympia. The story noted his proposed goal of having 50 percent of the state’s homeless folks “under shelter” by 2022. A proposed budget of $300 million would be taken from the state budget’s so-called “rainy day fund.”

Opposition to the idea took the form of the other party objecting that no additional funding was required, as there was already plenty of other sources already in place. Which causes me to scratch my head: if sufficient funds to address the need for homeless assistance already exists, why isn’t it being applied?

I then realized that NOBODY in WA state government seriously intends to address the problem. The article revealed that the WA state “rainy day fund” now stands at 2.5 BILLION dollars. The Governor’s proposal to tap it for $300K is simply a small portion. So it becomes obvious that the presence of so many homeless folk in WA state is neither a public emergency nor a “rainy day.”

In fact, our public apathy and intolerance for homeless folks and their rude insistence on surviving in plain site on our streets, business districts, and neighborhoods is justification for retaining $2.5 billion of surplus state funds untouched, just in case we the people should encounter a “genuine” rainy day requiring state expenditures.

cee
7 months ago
Reply to  Gray

Well stated!!!

Billy Bob Thorton
8 months ago

Until the liberal policies are addressed, you will see an increase in this situation. We are long past the time where we could establish a program similiar to the CCC, to lift the able bodied up to productive taxpayers. The worst cities for homelessness, decay and near bankruptcy, are run by governors and mayors of one party. Perhaps the policies spewed by those administration, are not in the interest of the people they represent. But, even this is not believed by one half of the citizenry. You are going to see much of the same, and the end will be the haves and the have not. Get use to it, for the person who is doing everything he said he would do, if elected, is mocked by those who control the communication to the masses. There are too little informed, to make a marketable difference.

Alvin
7 months ago

Boy oh Boy Billy BT, did you nail it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Ron Hall
8 months ago

Although there’s homelessness in all of America , I believe it could be helped
if the cities would put the people to work . There’s vacant building in every city , let
the city put them in these building cleaning and painting fixing up those building for rent. We live close to Louisville Ky where we see these tent cities and so help me , when it’s Derby
week they make the city them clean them up , but the following week they’re back to Norm .

Billy Bob Thorton
8 months ago
Reply to  Ron Hall

Noble, but cant happen. Words are cheap, actions takes balls. If you think you could stand up to overwhelming vitriol, like the current guy in charge, that at last count 95% negative, then your mistaken. You will never in your lifetime, see an elected official do what he promised he would do running for the office. It’s never happened in the history of this country, and if they get their way, they will cut it short by 4 years. All the while dancing in the streets as ” Rome” burns.

Drew
8 months ago

As I’ve said before, if you tolerate this- then it will continue. In Providence, Rhode Island they recognized what the rest of the nation hasn’t yet.- This isn’t a homeless problem, it’s a drug problem. There’s a place they put these people in and they have a choice of which rehab they want….that’s the only choice they have. There’s somewhere around a 90% success rate where these people don’t return and find legitimate lives. It’s a relatively simple model to follow and it does cost money, but compared to what the rest of the country does it’s cheap.

cee
7 months ago
Reply to  Drew

Saying it is a drug problem rather than a homeless problem is really simplifying a huge issue. I believe it is an accumulation of many problems such as low wages, high cost of living, high cost of medical insurance/care/drugs just to name a few. Too many wage earners are below the poverty level which at one time was restricted to the poor but now it also includes middle class. Most of us are one medical crisis away from losing everything we’ve worked for. We need to come up with creative solutions to help those who are struggling. I believe there are those who don’t want help but there are many many more who do. We owe our fellow human beings understanding and compassion and a helping hand up. It takes a village.

Bryan Barlow
7 months ago
Reply to  cee

I totally agree with Cee.

Roy Christensen
8 months ago

I don’t pretend to have all the answers, but I think part of the problem is low wages and the cost of housing. There are many hard working people who have several jobs that are low paying with no benefits. The cost of housing, food and medical care force them to be the “working poor”. They can’t get ahead and struggle to live. Some of these people give up trying. Then some people have mental health issues or physical health problems. The mental health problems are not always visibly obvious. Then there are some people who have gotten addicted to opioids through no fault of their own. Pharmaceutical companies have touted these drugs for quite some time as a cure-all for pain.
There are many reasons why people get down and out. Some of it is their own fault, or poor parenting or poor education. As a teacher for 33 years, I saw many students with problems. The teachers would collect clothing, hold raffles, and alert authorities to some of these problems, but it wasn’t always enough. Some of the students had poor attendance and you can’t teach someone who isn’t there. Others were sick and didn’t have health care.
I feel very fortunate that I had parents who provided for us and made us work hard in school. Not everyone has those advantages. I try not to judge people who are struggling to live. It’s not always their fault. And if they made mistakes in their lives, maybe we can be compassionate and try to help them to straighten out.
Finally, I know there are people who might be lazy and don’t want to work. How do we determine which of the homeless fall into this category?

Wolfe
8 months ago

Many many people point out that there ARE tons of jobs — but people don’t want to do them. I think weeding out the supposed “lazy” as you ask is a matter of connecting the “want to work” with the “needs work done” WITHOUT allowing government to step in between. If I want my lawn mowed for $20, the kid can take it or leave it, but don’t tax him so bad that my lawn isn’t worth the $3 he’d get to keep. Now NEITHER involved party is happy, and even the overlords don’t get any skim. Suppressing business is NEVER the right move by government, but since they can’t actually create production, all they CAN do is stop it.

Or, if government insists as they always do, carrot/stick it by making all welfare dependant on a list of simple public jobs. We need potholes filled and ditches dug, so to get ANY public support, go do some. Once ‘back on your feet’ go get another job outside the workcamp. People who can’t run a shovel CAN still run a pen/keyboard/phone/microphone (maybe be a receptionist, not even more burdensom government!). STILL don’t want to do ANYTHING? Now we’ve located the “lazy” you were talking about. MOST people want to work if you give them opportunity, so it doesn’t look hard to identify the slackers.

Billy Bob Thorton
8 months ago

Nonsense. Do this; give testing, physicals, mental evaluations to those who are not carrying their weight. Those that pass, are given a list of available jobs. If further skills are needed, and they tested, train them. I dont care if you dont want to do that “job”. If your able bodied, and your hungry enough, you will work. The alternative is much more unpleasant. Oh, and for those who don’t make the standard, that’s our responsibility to put them in lower paying jobs and subsidize the difference to a living wage.

Don’t want to work and your able bodied, life is going to get even harder for you.

Alvin
8 months ago

Right on BBT!

Daryl W
8 months ago

I applaud this group for being civil to each other within this topic! Isn’t that the root of the solution? Sensitivity to differences, uplifting that which is common to us all. Good job. Couple thoughts. Not everyone fits into the ‘normal’ box… just look at us RVers! What is acceptable, healthy, dignified, legal and still individualistic is one question. Camping in front of my business door… NO! we all need a ‘place’, a nest. How we define that is important. I think on how sharecroppers survived, working and living off land owned by another. I’d love to adopt a family that’d help work my farm, take care of me as I age further and have their own ‘place’ on my modest farm…. take care

Michael Alamo
8 months ago

Just remember that our new conservative leaning Supreme Court just last week let stand the ruling that homeless could camp in public areas without being charged with trespassing.

This is why cities like Austin seem to allow this homeless situation to exist. Unfortunately these camps are most often garbage filled and pollution spoiled spots. Recently in my hometown a clean-up effort gathered 1,600 syringes in the process.

Most of these people are not employable and many are veterans and others who suffer from mental illnesses or drug addiction.

An additional difficulty seen in California is the extremely high cost of housing. Seems like our wonderful economy is not really reaching those who need a boost the most, those on the bottom economic level of our society. I personally know two senior friends who are hard working none drug abusing wonderful people who are hanging on by a thread living with friends or they would be homeless.

Yes there are jobs however in California many of the newer jobs do not offer full time or enough to even pay for basic lodging. If you have a minimum wage job in the town I live in and work full time, you have to live in your car.

Billy Bob Thorton
8 months ago
Reply to  Michael Alamo

Enough of the whoa is me line. MOVE to a state that has lower taxes and housing costs than California. Guess what, you have your pick of probably 45+ states to choose from. You have a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. What you don’t have a right to, is housing, healthcare and a high paying job. You can however attain those goals if you worknhard everyday of your life. You want lower affordable healthcare, then demand from your representatives it be open to competition, and stop the oligopoly setup since the 1930s. Why is it you can purchase auto insurance nationwide from many companies that are licensed in most states, yet that concept escapes heath insurance. It’s your corrupt politicians doing that to you. Start paying attention, and voting for those who will deliver on promises made if elected, short of that, you will be relagated to mediocrity and misery.

Edward Wullschleger
8 months ago

I lived in a trailer park in Colorado in the 1970’s when I was working for near minimum wage and then going to college (which was MUCH cheaper then!). I had been able to buy a cheap trailer and only had to pay $45 monthly for space rent. Now I make a 6 figure income and live in a nice suburban community in Colorado. There aren’t any trailer parks nearby and not many in our whole town compared to the number of low-income workers. Also, that minimum wage in the 1970’s? It was about $2.60. Prices in 2019 are 475.81% higher than average prices since 1973 according to http://www.officialdata.org. That would be equivalent to $15.60 today (2.60 + 2.60*4.7581), but I don’t think wages are the main problem for the working homeless. I think its the cost of housing and the associated zoning laws and building code restrictions as compared to the 1970’s.

While there has always been some homelessness such as hobo camps in the past, it appears that we as a society have made choices that have made it much worse in recent decades.

Alvin
8 months ago

Edward, the minimum wage in Alberta Canada right now is $15.00 per hour. Less than 200 miles south of here in Great Falls Montana it is $7.25, and there’s big time poverty in both places. People who win the lottery are broke a few years later. I think this has got more to do with what you do with the money than how much of it you make.

I began my life’s career in 1967 – starting wage $1.15 an hour. I thought I was in heaven, I HAD A JOB, and the future got brighter every single day, for a very long time.

Billy Bob Thorton
7 months ago
Reply to  Alvin

Alvin,

The problem with common sense, is that it’s not so common. Read that somewhere. Exactly right sir. There is an inherent wiring for the majority of homo sapiens, to take the path of least resistance, if the citizenry (absent of corrupt politicians) allows it to exist. There is an entire generation of Americans who were told they were special, when all they did was mediocrity work, in school, and at the job. Those, however, who excelled in the work environment, are assigned more work than their fair share of the outstanding tasks, in order for the system to continue to function. I dont know exactly when the SWHTF, but its coming. Too many idiots are not paying attention to whats right infront of them. Keep raising the minimum wage, and the system will automate further. Its called economics 101 you idiot politicians.

Wolfe
8 months ago

Decades ago, a very wise man told me that “Anytime you see something that isn’t right in the world, and doesn’t seem to make sense because it should be pretty easy to fix, look at [the controllers] who WANT it that way.” It seems obvious logic, and pessimistic that anyone could want people to suffer, but in the 40 years or so since, I’ve seen it over… and over… and over. Who are the controllers here? The government that we keep trying to vote out and gets back in over and over. Seriously! Consider things you KNOW but then are trained to ask to hurt yourself more:

Most folks pay 40% taxes. If someone “gave” you your 40% back, you’d never worry about poverty… if you’re scraping by now, you’d probably be “rich” as you define it.

I run my own businesses… when I have a bad year, I collect —zero— assistance, and when I have a good year my taxes go up further. IF I give someone a job, I pay more fees and taxes and insurances that my employees will never EVER recoup. If I gave them those fees, it would almost double their salaries. Seriously… you have no idea how much your “benefits” you keep asking government to make mandatory cost your employer!!! When I am employed by others, I’d rather double my salary then get “free” insurance that still has copays and does a lousy job while mandating who my doctor will be. I’d have trouble spending the amount my employers have paid per year for my benefits I didn’t want. And it’s getting harder to GET a job, because every employee has to be paid far more thanks to government.

We have drug addiction problems (supposedly, that’s another discussion). Instead of treatment, we give away free syringes and try to “understand” their sickness. Drugs aren’t a new thing. Drugs haven’t gotten more powerful at the doses they are abused. What changed is how society responds.

Crime has in fact DECREASED in the last several decades — look it up. And yet media keeps harping on “our dangerous times” as an excuse to limit your American freedoms tighter and tighter… And government has gone INSANE…

Just in New York – just passed a law where (short of murder) NO ONE goes to jail between crime and trial. Criminals have the right to re-visit the crime scene so they can prepare their defense. So, this LITERALLY means if you’re sexually assaulted, “that guy” gets to walk through your bedroom again to relive the crime, and then is left completely free to visit you again anytime they like until the trial. It’s happened. Drunk drivers at new years were put back out on the street the same night (few hundred cases). Driving without a license at all? No problem — drive yourself home from the station (yes, it happened). Meanwhile, if you dare try to defend yourself, YOU will go to jail because “NYSAFE” just got even more stringent.

VA just proposed a bill to void Posse Commitattus (sp?), in which “10 man military and local SWAT teams are authorized to confiscate [all common hunting rifles] using deadly force, absent of any prior crime.” These aren’t dangerous rifles — literally written as flat-out confiscation of whatever models by armed thugs. There is a bill to make the NRA HQ range illegal. Any range with more than 10 employees would be. We “trust” VA to be smarter than NY and these bills (and others) won’t actually pass (you mean like the many other insanities above DID?), but whackos in government dare propose this in America???

I could go on, but you get my point… When “someone” has the power to take money and liberty by force, they WILL. Every time.

Linda
7 months ago
Reply to  Wolfe

Wolfe for President 😁

Billy Bob Thorton
7 months ago
Reply to  Wolfe

Ah, New York State. Here is what WILL HAPPEN. There will be acceptable carnage, mayhem, murder, rape, burglary, oh and cats and dogs living together! That will increase because of the current emperor running the state. There will be a curtailment when someone of status has sufficient crime committed against said person(s).
That will trigger the knucklehead to have his henchmen in the NYS assembly, propose ” correcting” legislation. Until such time, hope and pray the mayhem passes over you and your loved ones. This is New York State, under one party rule. Like it, it just happened in VA. But VA my friends is not NY. You see, the North won the first one, but I pray to the Lord thy God, the South will lead us from the darkness, from the political party that use to represent the common man. And is now run by buggers and thieves.

Everybody hated it when a business man was elected POTUS. When he made promises that both parties said couldn’t be kept. He fought, and continues to fight everyday for ALL AMERICANS. He has fulfilled the vast majority of his promises. Why you ask, he’s not a Politician, that’s why. Either wake up and pay attention, give him control of the house, have him expose the elected class for who they are. ITS OUR COUNTRY, READ THE CONSTITUTION.

Clint
8 months ago

Most have been raised without family values or support, schools that turn out unemployable illiterates, ease of getting narcotics and welfare. Not held accountable by any government authority. Please note I said “most” not all.

KR.dD
8 months ago

I wonder how many of these poor folks are in this situation because of a life of Bad Choices and not learning from their Bad Choices. A School System and parents that don’t teach a Work Ethic but rather a Victim Ethic. You know, what it takes. Get the best, cheapest Education for a trade you can, show up on time, work hard, live below your means, save your money, stay off drugs,(except coffee). Don’t get Pregnant until you have decent prospects.

We have two kids, one has consistently made good choices and learned, the other hasn’t, man what a difference.

Alvin
8 months ago
Reply to  KR.dD

KR.dD, how can parents teach their kids a work ethic when there’re both working?

mdstudey
8 months ago
Reply to  Alvin

When they see you working your butt off to keep a roof over their head. My kid did not get everything he wanted because he wanted it. He had to earn it.

SAM WARR
8 months ago

The USA is not the only country in the World that is confronted with “homelessness”. A good write-up is provided by the following link established by the Salvation Army in Australia. https://www.salvationarmy.org.au/oasis/what-we-do/homelessness/youth-homelessness/. This probably would be better defined as “homeless hopelessness”. Our country is faced with severe addiction to drugs of all kinds. The latest is opioids. Our borders are open to drugs and unfortunately the war on drugs is a farce. Like most things today in America, it’s all about the money. Law enforcement is fighting an uphill battle against drugs. As long as Americans demand the drugs, there will be a market, which has paid off politicians, law enforcement and any other people that try to bring the influx of drugs into our country to a halt. Second, we are now in the process of legalizing marijuana. I’m sure that the illegal hard drug industry loves this fact, since it will be another small way to open up their business to use of hard drugs. We, as Americans, are bringing this on ourselves. Violence, lack of patience with one another, lack of respect for each other, murder committed without any real consequences because we have done away with capital punishment. We spend billions to provide prison housing to feed, clothe, provide medical and dental care, legal assistance to people that have recklessly harmed society for their own gain. They are treated much better than the hopeless homeless. We, as Americans, are in great trouble and at the brink to greater risk of deterioration. And yet, we have the capability to turn this around. Everyone has to positively pitch in to do it. Money is not the total answer. It’s how people treat each other.

Alvin
8 months ago
Reply to  SAM WARR

SAM WARR, well stated, just substitute America or Americans for Canada or Canadians, and you got it right both sides of 49. Sad but true to the letter.

Eric Kaminsky
8 months ago

I feel very bad when people believe that the major causes of homelessness are to get “freebies” or mental illness or drug addiction. There are multiple reasons why someone becomes homeless. (Does anyone really believe that parents want their kids to grow up in cars or motels? ) These can I indeed include mental illness and drug addition. But it can also include circumstance beyond the control of the person who becomes homeless. Each homeless person has a story of his or her own, each has his or her own experience. Few probably chose homelessness but for the time being that is their lot in life. We may never achieve a 100% elimination of homelessness (without accepting the Cuban model. In Cuba everyone has a place to live but at the expense of important freedoms.) but we can be humane in approaching the problem. Many cities have taken empty lots, put in sanitation facilities and guards, and allowed the homeless to camp there in safety. This can be a temporary solution while we search for more permanent solutions. These can include medical and psychological care and, for many, job training or retraining so they can compete in a more meaningful way. Many occupations are being left behind due to technology and elimination of jobs due to changes in industries.

Alvin
8 months ago
Reply to  Eric Kaminsky

Ed although ‘I personally believe you may be living partially in a parallel universe, you suggested everything but the major problem driving this.

The poorest people on this planet breeding like flies then expecting people they’ll never meet thousands of miles away to support them and their offspring,

Very little over all has to do with circumstances beyond individual control.

Check Africa, and parts of Asia for population stats and tell me we as humans on this planet do not have a problem so big looming the discussion today is irreverent.

Lee
7 months ago
Reply to  Alvin

Thanks, Alvin. I was starting to think I was the only person who sees the rampant overpopulation of the planet, especially by the very people who have no business having children, as being one of the root causes of many of our troubles today. Another is rampant drug abuse, although as you and others here have pointed out, as long as there is a market for illegal drugs, there will be suppliers. If the demand went away, or we insisted on serious consequences/enforced rehabilitation for abusers, that would wither in a hurry.

Sink Jaxon
8 months ago

I live here in Colorado since 2007…This out of control homeless problem didn’t start until they legalized Marijuana, all in the big cities on the front range. Ft. Collins, Denver Colorado Springs and Pueblo. Then the free needle exchange made it 10 times worse. This is all about drugs. Most all these homeless I see are young and are able to work, but they won’t. Or worse because they can’t get hired because of felony charges or simply can’t pass a drug screen. It’s a vicious cycle. Sadly, I think we have passed the point of no return.

Barbara D
8 months ago

Feeding hungry people is humanity at its best. Showing compassion should not be derided. I know that perhaps I will be alone in my sentiments on this site, but as I look into the faces of those coming to the food pantry I volunteer at, the people look like me. The people at intersections panhandling for money look like me too. Please stop blaming immigrants (those that do not look like you) for the problem. It is so much worse than ever before, and there are no easy answers.

Alvin
8 months ago
Reply to  Barbara D

Sad Barbara, that you’ll sacrifice those who look like you for those who don’t or the other way around. This has nothing absolutely nothing to do with who looks like who.

That you choose to feed the compassion, feed the humanity, feed the problem, feed the dependency, extending the crime, the drug abuse, the calamities is your business.

But please know your noble compassion will sooner or later engulf you too, with you likely NOT enjoying the ride into the abyss.

Ed D.
8 months ago
Reply to  Barbara D

Barbara, I do not blame “immigrants” for anything. I do, however, lay blame at the feet of those that are here “illegally”. They are a strain on our economy and have broken our immigration laws to get here. I do not advocate rewarding these people with anything. Using the “because they don’t look like you”, has been so overplayed and worn out that most of us pay no attention to it. My opinion on Illegals, haws nothing to do “with how they look” but rather “how they have acted”! There is an easy answer. Deport each and every person that is here illegally and allow them to come back in the legal way!