Bummed Out: Angela Hunt Wants Homeless Issue in Main Street Garden Addressed

msgparksign.jpg
Photo by Justin Terveen
Directly below, in the comments, a reader accuses us of ignoring Angela Hunt's handful of weekend tweets concerning "bums camping out in our [downtown] parks, making them unusable for families, children, & residents." Can't ignore what you didn't see, but Hunt was referring specifically to Main Street Garden, where, she wrote, over the weekend she espied no fewer than a dozen homeless sleeping and camping out.

She wrote: "Where is DPD? Where is Bridge?! Mary, help!" Mary, of course, is Dallas City Manager Mary Suhm. And she posted photos.

Turns out, Hunt is not the only one complaining: Suhm told the council member yesterday  that the city has received "numerous complaints regarding homeless individuals in Main Street Garden," including recent reports of people urinating in public. One Friend of Unfair Park noted on Hunt's Facebook page, where quite the shouting match broke out, that "unfortunately Main Street Garden's homeless issue has become much worse over the past few months, despite increased Safety Patrol and Police presence."

Only last night I spoke on the phone with Willis Winters -- Parks and Rec's second-in-command and the man responsible Main Street Garden -- as he stood in the middle of Main Street Garden. He reported seeing 20 homeless in the park at 8:30, several of whom were sleeping on benches and next to the Lily Pad cafe. Suhm told Hunt Downtown Dallas Inc.'s Safety Patrol would step up its efforts, and that Dallas Police officers, both on-duty and off, would begin making the rounds in the park.

Last night, I asked Hunt if she regrets using the term "bum."

"I am referring only to the subset of the homeless who are aggressive panhandlers, who publicly use drugs and alcohol, and who, rather than use the shelters and the services provided by the city and nonprofits, choose instead to sleep on our parks," she explained. "The fact is we've made a tremendous investment in The Bridge, I've testified in Austin to get our first single-room occupancy unit building in downtown, and I've spoken at two homeless conferences, so I am not unfamiliar with the issue and the plight of the homeless and not unsympathetic. But I also know we've made tremendous investment in our parks, and when that subset of the homeless makes that their home rather than use the services offered to them, they create a hostile environment for everyone else."

Hunt said the weekend tweets were prompted by a series of recent visits to the park, including one last month that prompted a visit with city staff, who told her they'd "look into it." On Saturday, Hunt said, she returned and found "it was worse," with homeless sleeping on benches, in the grass and even beneath the triangular climber on the playground.

"And it was frustrating," Hunt said. "And I have constituents downtown who tell me, when I go to residential events, they're frustrated with the situation."

Among those who responded to Hunt's tweets was Larry James, head of CitySquare, formerly Central Dallas Ministries. He wrote back: "We'll engage this 'hot spot' next week, Angela," and Hunt responded that she "would like to get team together on this for plan to address homeless in DT parks."

I asked Hunt if she and James had spoken since Saturday's exchange: "I have not talked with him," she said. "But I have nothing but the utmost respect for him, and he may or may not be upset with me because of my choice of words. I appreciate his point, though, which was: We can get together and discuss how we can work on this. And I will take him up on that."

Council's on break through July, and more than likely this will come up upon its return from summer vacation, perhaps at a Quality of Life Committee meeting. Downtown Dallas Inc., which is trying to spur retail and residential development on the east end of downtown, certainly has a vested interest in this: Just last year its public safety staff tried to get downtown liquor stores to "prohibit the sale of 'high alcohol content beer and wine' to the homeless," which has been a bit hit-and-miss ever since.

Winters, who recently moved downtown and has begun to use the park every day at all times of the day, says the homeless are a constant in the park. And it will continue to be an issue as more parks are rolled out, including the under-construction Belo Garden.

"But when you ask if it's a concern, how do you answer that fairly?" says Winters. "They have just as much a right to a public park as anyone? Absolutely. Do they keep other people from using the facility? Perhaps. I don't have an answer to what can be done. It's a policing issue. And we don't have any ordinances that would preclude anyone from using the park, and I don't think we should -- ever. But it's a tough issue.

"At one point we thought by designing a park with so many different activities and trip generators, it would make the homeless less likely to want to be here, but that has not proven to be the case. They are commandeering parts that would be desirable to other park users. But I don't see an easy solution. And I don't want to call it a problem either, because they have a right to be here. In an ideal world, it would be shared and used by all, and currently it's not."

Advertisement

My Voice Nation Help
204 comments
Craig
Craig

Why not live side by side with these people instead of exiling them. Besides, whats some pocket change to most of you? Youre really bitching about people asking for change? How shallow. How about you get a life and realize that some people are not as privileged as you are.

Another alternative is to teach your kids why these people really are homeless... Because i can assure you not all homeless are bums, junkies, alcoholics, or any other type of "offender.". You might even learn something. Instead of giving them change, how many times have you gone and sat next to one of these people and struck up a conversation. They are just like you regardless of how much money they have, their way of life, or their preference in alcohol, because everyone knows that most of american society is a bunch of stupid drunks.

Instead of giving them shit, give them some entertainment.

Philip Melton
Philip Melton

There should be an ordinance against panhandling and there Should be a park Curfew to keep them from Sleeping in the parks the last time I was in Downtown Dallas  A homeless person asked me for money and When I said I had no cash  I never carry cash these days  he got really aggressive and I had to threaten him with Bodily Harm to get him away from me   no one owes the homeless anything  and no one should feel they have to give them money out of fear of them getting aggressive when you don't give them any

Dallas Diner
Dallas Diner

I expect the crowd of runners to be smelly after a 10K race.  I expect to be solicited by the Girl Scouts selling cookies and the band kids selling candy.  I expect to get exasperated at the Jehovah's Witnesses who knock on my door most every weekend.  I expect the people at my family reunion to be crazy.  But it would be nice sometimes, maybe not every time, to be able to go and sit in a city park for an hour or so without having the unbathed sit next to me, hitting me up for money and talking about how the aliens from planet Zog are out to get them,  Is it so dreadfully horrible, is it totally lacking in social consciousness just to want something to be nice every now and then?  

Ms Freedmans
Ms Freedmans

What the diffrence between dog pee and homeless pee??????? The man is homeless and the dog lives in a 250,000 dollar townhome , what???

Ms Freedmans
Ms Freedmans

I know for show that when the City of Dallas does not want to see you in a area that the have planned for the rich to enjoy, watch out, simpley  Griggs Park was design for African Americans in this City in 1921,and a pool was design to draw African Americans to the park football field etc. And when they design Uptown the first thing was to take the pool we do not want to see little African American children swimming at Griggs park, and so today the police chases them up out of Treymore at City Place. I have ask for Griggs Park to become a Historic Landmank to peserver some of our History and maybe the Kids will look at what Rev. Allen Griggs did in tha Community maybe they will be inspired. But Hunt and the rest of the Council looks and say nothing!!!!!!!!!!!!! I know male friends that have had the cops call because they look supect, being AA at Griggs Park its sad they don't want to go Griggs Park ! And the park has become a place for dogs to urinate and do the #2 and the children in Roseland Homes do not have any use for the park Angela and Parks and planning know that those children are over there. She con play like she 's fair but she knows I know that truth!!!!!    Right Angela 

Flexees
Flexees

I honestly believe its a fashion issue with Ms Hunt..If they looked fashionable  there would be no issue.We all know Dallas has a reputation to uphold and simple giving the 'bums' designer clothing to wear and a law making  -unfashionable- illegal would be much easier for the DPD to enforce....

Tad Banyon
Tad Banyon

I just saw the film "Hobo With A Shotgun".Now I'm afraid to go anywhere that park.

Cityrunamuk
Cityrunamuk

Wish CM Hunt had as much interest in attacking the homeless issues in the Dallas Farmers Market Area as she does with Main Street Gardens.   And to think our district voted to return her to office........

Luciano Benavidez
Luciano Benavidez

Down town Dallas has obviously become the center for the "rich"..... public parks are for everyone!!!! Angela Hunt needs to revise her thinking.....   When someone gets out of hand, then the police force can come in the picture.  just because you are not making a lot of money, should not ban you from the park!!!!!!   there are a lot of "rich" kids who misbehave in public but have their "daddy" get them out of jam...... not fair.  this needs to stop!!!!!!   the art district of Dallas catters only to the rich!!!!!! we cannot afford to go see any shows!!!!!!   give me a break!

Dallas Resident
Dallas Resident

Angela Hunt is concerned about the homeless at the park, but supports the St. Paul Apts supportive housing next to a daycare a couple blocks away. What do you expect?  Are these council members that clueless? Her comments - Where is The Bridge is such a joke.  With their open door policies and less than 1/3 of its visitors participating in any services. It is the draw that keeps all the people coming from out of state. Who needs tax paying property owners or residents when you can have a downtown full of homeless poorly managed by a facility like The Bridge.

Admin
Admin

Let's tell the truth... A majority of the homeless population downtown are minorities who have criminal backgrounds, lack of resources & wealth, and addictions because of the system in which they are accustomed but also are afforded the same civil rights that you are given.

So you are upset that homeless individuals are loitering in a public park? Homeless individuals are people just like you and have the right to enjoy the park as much as you do without being harassed by the City of Dallas Police and Downtown Dallas's Safety Patrol especially homeless individuals who haven't committed a crime.

Downtown businesses and resident as well as the City of Dallas has to realize that homeless individuals are people who are given the same rights established in the constitution and have the right to use the park as well. If a person is breaking the law, arrest them or move them along but do not discriminate/profile just because you are blessed to have more than them or turned out.

Ask yourself what if you were homeless and just enjoying the park (not breaking the law) and were asked to leave by safety patrol or DPD because of how you look ???

downtowngman
downtowngman

I am not challenging that there may be some problems at thepark. After reading all of the comments from all the press coverage on thisincident, now found all over the Internet, it appears there are some complaintsand not all involve the homeless. I do have a problem with an elected official takingunauthorized pictures of citizens in a public park and labeling them as bums.Did she get permission to take their picture and did she tell them that she wasgoing to send it out on the Internet calling them bums? The people in thepictures are not breaking the law and she is assuming they are homeless. Thereare pictures in the albums on her Facebook page showing citizens enjoyingother parks, sitting around on the ground on blankets and chairs, I guess thatmakes them bums too? This was poor judgment on Ms Hunt's part and a very poorchoice of words.

Julia E.S. Spencer
Julia E.S. Spencer

I live downtown, and I'd say the number of dogs using the park as a bathroom makes me more reluctant to walk or sit on the grass than the presence of homeless people. Perhaps we could get one of the self-cleaning public toilets I have seen in Europe, which would benefit everyone.It's crazy to have policies such as camping bans making it illegal to be homeless, and just pushing the population elsewhere. I'm not afraid of the homeless, and I don't find it onerous to say, "I'm sorry, I have no cash" if I'm broke and approached for money. If you were homeless, you'd just want a meal and a place to sleep, and try to keep your head down and not make trouble. Most people I know, myself included, wouldn't qualify to stay at the Salvation Army, since we've had an alcoholic beverage in the past 30 days. And if you feel as if you need a stiff drink after a rough day at work, think about how you'd feel having the worst day ever--day after day after day. And when it's freezing cold or unbearably hot and you have to sleep outside--numbing yourself to the pain is understandable, I'd say. People make up all sorts of excuses for their lack of compassion, but the truth is that there, but for the grace of our creator and the funds to get medical or mental-health care, go all of us.

Anne-Radd-360
Anne-Radd-360

No one seems to realize that a lot of the homeless people in cities and even in my small town, are no older than nineteen. You say you don't like the "trouble makers" but, can you blame them for getting into trouble when they were born into a terrible situation they had no control over? Can you blame them for getting frustrated when they have to watch their brother push drugs, their sister get shot, and trying to come to terms with the fact that their parents abandoned them at three? Sadly, this is the case with quite a few of the people starting trouble. In fact, you may not realize it, but every time you go downtown or to the store, you pass by homeless teenagers. 

Ellen
Ellen

I am not bashing Christians, I am speaking to the "religious" people who have perverted the word of God and who outwardly profess him, but their hearts are far from him... Who build huge monuments of success inc. to themselves and have ignored the basic common decency afforded to mankind that the bible espouses.  I hesitate to say that if Christ himself was here today in Dallas he would be down in the park with the homeless. But he had a better idea,  he said "he would send you"... I know.. he also said the poor you will have always...  I just thought the tone was getting a little hostile to those that are the least amongst us.. I understand it is not nice to deal with pubic urination, trash etc, but as I stated in my first post these are all solvable issues.  I just think that people sometimes need to take a breath, and think about things.

CR
CR

I don't think the problem is aggressive panhandling in parks, so much as more people from well-to-do areas are moving into downtown Dallas and are trying to turn it into Addison.  They are repulsed by a subset of homeless people, who wear scraggly clothes, have unkempt hair, and smell bad.  Rather than handing out soup and providing shelters, maybe nonprofit groups could work together in handing out designer clothes to homeless people and providing free hair trims and stylings at the parks where homeless hang out. 

If some people are bothering other people in the parks, put a nice fence around the park, start charging a small fee to enter, which will raise tax revenue to improve the quality of the park and pay for park security riding around on golf carts.  Raise additional park revenue by leasing to vendors selling hotdogs, cotton candy, and stuff. You might have a better park as a result.  Anybody that is disturbing the peace, kick them out.  Don't let people in the park 10pm - 5am. Quite simple.

downtown_rider
downtown_rider

Since the day this park opened, I have seen the homeless build up a larger and larger presence here, and it infuriates me because they take ALL the good sitting spots.  Here are my two comments:

First, I also ride my bike through Fair Park, and I never see homeless people there, even though it seems like a better spot to me.  We should find out what they do there, and duplicate those measures.

And second, I disagree with Winters.  Parks are paid for by taxes, and homeless people do not pay taxes.  They do not have more rights to be there than I do.  And to be clear, these are not temporary homeless people who are trying to better themselves and get jobs.  These are lazy, no good bums who sleep there and hang out all day, and that is no way to secure employment.  They should have no right to be there every day, enjoying my tax dollars and not even making an attempt to contribute.  I know this because I see the same ones there every day begging for money and sleeping.

freddy
freddy

I was recently approached by a panhandler INSIDE a big-box store in North Dallas. Normally they don't bother me but I was surprised.  Now y'all - please don't tell anyone I was in a big-box store in North Dallas.

Eastdallasgirl
Eastdallasgirl

 How do you tell “some people” it is ok to sit on the public bench, and not others? Angela’s point is valid; if you are drunk or stoned, you don’t belong in a public park. Not sure how Tweeting will fix that; but I like that Angela doesn’t shy away from the issue. Now what I do know is that many of Dallas Homeless are smart enough to stay out of eyesight of the DPD.  And, they play the system, by at least trying to follow the rules of the Bridge and the Salvation Army.   There must be some other solutions to keep the parks safe while allowing anyone public access…

Ellen
Ellen

Why not contact all the mega churches in the area, and give them a "what would Jesus do opportunity" they could refer to sermon on the mount rules and regulations.. how about the good Samaritan, I hear that was a strong indictment against the Pharisee... or there is that really inconvenient one " as much as you have done unto the least of these you have done unto me" related to giving a drink of water,shelter...etc etc.. and then there is the really BIG ONE. Love.it is the greatest commandment... If The Church got involved maybe ?..Sorry I am being slightly fascetious .

greg
greg

We live at the Republic Tower. Every morning, one can see the urine stains on the walls of the office entrance next to our front door.  We are on the "main line" running from the Bridge to the liquor store at Elm and Ervay.  The Main Street park (and our doorway) become the public toilets. Easy solutions?  Not that I can see, but a hose or sprinklers could make it clear that using the public domain as a bathroom is not going to be tolerated.  And since when did "bum" become a dirty word?  Panhandling, sleeping on park benches and using a public park as a bathroom...sounds like BUMS to me.

Ellen
Ellen

America had better get use to see homeless people... who are trouble makers as you put it..My husband was in charge of all the down range casualties from Iraq, Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia.. I have  stood and watched our young soldiers arrive in landstuhl Germany.. one after another on ventilators. severe head traumas... injuries I don't even have time to discuss here, and even though we stabilize them, treat them send them to Walter Read Hospital to begin the long road to rehabilitation.. I promise you this.. one day when you are passing by someone who is an inconvenience to your Sunday stroll.  You will be passing by a War Veteran who can no longer function in this great land that he bravely fought for... I know you aren't talking about that one either... You are talking maybe about the one who had a job, and a family, a house, front yard to mow..  but one day a drunk driver took everything from him.. and he cant recover.. He is still in grief and slowly lost everything that kept him off the streets.. Hum.. not that one you weren't talking about him,  I could go on for ever as many people as there are,  that are homeless self medicated on drugs, alcohol, and  they all have a story... I will go back to "there but for the Grace Of God Go I".

Guy Smiley
Guy Smiley

Most homeless don't like the city or non-profit-provided facilities, b/c they always come with strict conditions...strict curfews, strict times you must be there or get locked out, strict bed times, strict times when you get booted out back onto the streets.  Some non-profits are worse in that they force homeless, who are tired and already feeling bad about their situation, to sit through fire-n-brimstone sermons for hours, basically being berated, rather than just giving them a meal and a place to lay their head which they desperately need.  They need facilities to wash up at, get clean water, shelter, etc, but there's always contingencies going along with it, and they always get treated like scum.  So, they get hostile.  And some get so tired of it they'd rather just fend on the streets.  But then they get ran off as destitutes.  It's a demeaning and berating situation which most see no way out of.

rumpunch
rumpunch

Also, a little off of the subject, but while were at it.  Let's stop using the veteran crutch.  I know that many of the homeless population are in fact veterans.  However, it is offensive to use this fact to forgive the actions of the bad seeds.  Almost all of the men in my Family have served in the military.  Many had experiences that we should never have to endure.  One example, my Grandfather led a tank battalion though Europe under heavy fire from the Nazis (actual Nazis not just people with opposing political viewpoints).  He came back from the war a better man and went to work everyday until he retired and lived as a civalized part of society until the day he died.  My other Grandfather was torpedoed by the Japanese costing the lives of many of his friends but lived his life out just as my other grandfather.

My point is, don't blame the military for their conditions. 

dtowner
dtowner

I couldnt agree more.  I wish Angela Hunt was as concerned about issues in the farmers market area with regards to The Bridge as she is the Main Street Gardens. Where is The Bridge?  The Bridge is not a prison. I mean what do you expect when you have a facility with open door policies a few blocks from city hall, the new convention hotel and downtown businesses.  Farmers Market property owners and business owners have been compaining to CM Hunt and Medrano about the escalating crime and public safety issues for two years to deaf ears. The Bridge has become the drop off place for prison parole ,jail parole and mental health hospitals.  It is a halfway house not a shelter.

Snookie Pie
Snookie Pie

Just 22 more months of Angela Hunt.  Her 4 terms end June 2013.

Let's find someone with a little more class next time.

Stacy
Stacy

are u blind.....did u read the same article as us? Angela never stated social standing whatsoever in this article....she said BUMS....when asked to clarify the term bum she said pl urinating in public.....doin drugs....drinking alcohol "outside deck on lilly pad"....sleeping and soliciting....WHICH ARE ILLEGAL IN ALL PUBLIC PARKS IN THIS COUNTRY. ....calm down...and FYI...last month they had Jazz under the stars at the DMA....and IT WAS FREE.........

Stacy
Stacy

Why are ppl not reading this article??? She is not referring to homeless ppl using the park...She is referring to "BUMS" Sleeping, drinking, doing drugs and soliciting in the park....WHICH IS ILLEGAL IN ALL PARKS.....she states this 3x.........Infact if u read this article you would see SHE NEVER EVEN USED THE TERM HOMELESS PPL!!!!!!!!!! expect "2x to say " homeless ppl sleeping on benches"" WHICH IS ILLEGAL"  BUST OUT UR DICTIONARY cause bum and homeless are 2 totally different things!!!!!!!!!!!!!

freddy
freddy

First Baptist is building a huge new complex downtown and I am SURE they are going to include the homeless!

Honeybee
Honeybee

"Religious people...but their hearts are far from him..."Who are you to judge their hearts?

Christians ARE downtown, Ellen, attempting to help, but OBVIOUSLY some homeless don't want the help and prefer to be in the parks instead.

Again, what MORE are the churches and Christians supposed to do?  Just drop off cash with the people in the parks?  

And it's because of my involvement in those ministries that I do know what Christians and churches are trying to do.  Good Samaritans abound.

freddy
freddy

I think some of what you say is correct. I grew up in East Dallas among all sorts of people and I've had a homeless friend, a friend in a half-way house and a relative I kept taking to the Salvation Army (he kept leaving).  Only one of them was from East Dallas but anyhow, homeless  people really don't get on my nerves.

Still I don't think they should be able to camp out in a park. I'm sure the police wouldn't let me do that. 

Everyone who is bemoaning the plight of the homeless should take one or two in!

elainec
elainec

I have never seen a panhandler in Addison - where do they go?  In any large city, there are homeless, and there are places to go for a small number of these seeking organized public funding and community support. There are also tons of hideouts where the majority of the homeless really live.  I think downtown is better off now that we have facilities like the Bridge, or Salvation Army, but we probobly need more of these to support the numbers. Not everyone will take advantage of these services, but if the process includes MHMR access, recovery options, halfway houses, and real job resources, things may improve.

Whodunnit
Whodunnit

Some great ideas......Now, see if you can get the city council "colleagues" to pass some ordinances to facilitate these concepts.

Notgurus
Notgurus

"These are lazy, no good bums who sleep there and hang out all day, and that is no way to secure employment. "If someone you loved had become so addicted to a substance that they became like these people whom you so malign, would you then feel an ounce of compassion?The city could try to identify and intervene with the individuals who have become too drug/alcohol/mentally ill to find work or stability. They might benefit from programming.Be careful in your high and mighty complacency, you may be a lot closer to destitution than you think. I'm just saying...

trannnyntraining
trannnyntraining

Those people you speak of though, aren't creating the parks to be unsafe. Were are the statistics to show this? If you're homeless you only have one place to be and that is outside. Should we have breathalyzers posted at all park entrances? Maybe, we should just grow some thicker skin and realize that these, brothers and sisters, of ours aren't going anywhere, and live our life as we do, when we meet others, we don't necessarily agree with.

Ellum08
Ellum08

First Baptist is too busy building a temple to Robert Jeffress to trouble themselves with something as trivial as the homeless.

rumpunch
rumpunch

Look to Dr. Tony Evans.  He has been saying the same thing.  Many Churches have dropped the ball as far as caring for the World.  First Presbyterian led the charge downtown to feed the masses and continues to serve often in cooperation with the Bridge.

However, again this is not the issue.  I commend you for your service to our injured vets and your compassion. Let us not let the criminal element hide behind those in need of compassion. 

Honeybee
Honeybee

Enabling people to waste their lives sleeping, drugging, and begging isn't my idea of Christianity.There is ample help for those who want it, funded by people with compassion.

Quit bashing Christians about the people who don't want help.What are we supposed to do?  Force them into detox?  Drag them to an employment agency?

Wake up to the reality that there really, really, really are people who do not want to work and are perfectly happy peeing on walls and asking for handouts.  And enabling them by looking the other way and allowing them to take over parks surely isn't compassion.

trannnyntraining
trannnyntraining

didn't mean to make the comment I did to yours. it becomes a bit eye boggling with all these comments. once again, please excuse me.

trannnyntraining
trannnyntraining

I don't think it's an excuse, as much as a way to show folks, that it is not just runaway junkies living this life. It affects all stratums of life, and just because your family has the strength, doesn't mean others do. Once again though, where are all these criminal bums? I believe they are mostly living in homes. 

trannnyntraining
trannnyntraining

She did a little back pedaling when she was confronted. The pictures she took and showed pertaining to these "bums" are of folks who are doing nothing wrong, just sitting and enjoying the park. You sound like a loyal supporter of hers and that's great...but everyone is human and even Ms.Hunt can make a few mistakes from time to time...and this was one of them.

Ellen
Ellen

I have obviously offended you... that was not my intent.you sound frustrated and angry.  I differentiate between Christians and religious people.. It seems to me that Christ died for everyone, he didn't die just for those who were good, clean, upright,He died for the most miserable of us the sick and heart broken, the prostitutes the politicians, the thieves, and the murderers, the wealthy and the poor, the lame and the healthy, the liars, the proud, and the homeless and the drunks, druggies, reprobates and all that I missed.. everyone.. even the mentally ill who choose a bench over a mattress.   I know that God will move mightily as in the days of old and the sons and daughters of the most high will stand before the the hungry and lost and dying world, and say "silver and gold have I none, but such as I have I give unto you." . Good works can only do so much.. Resurrection Power will do everything.

Honeybee
Honeybee

The city and the churches have tried to intervene.For those who want the help, it is there.There are multiple sites offering help in this city.

So now what?Just stand by and watch while the parks are trashed and made unusable for everyone else?  Just ignore the potential for disease spread that public urination and defecation can cause?  

Since well-established help exists, what do you propose?

Ellen
Ellen

Hello, I myself am not Ellen, I am her teenage daughter who happened to see your rather sarcastic comment. I must say, your argument is lackluster at best. "There really, really, really are people who do not want to work and are perfectly happy peeing on walls and asking for handouts." Have you ever seen a hobo skip down the street singing a song? I for one, have only seen a look of joy on a homeless person's face when my mother offered the sixteen year old homeless girl a ride to her father's home, two hours out of our way. She was not attempting to shame Christians, or tell you how you're supposed to think. She has spent her entire life, (fifty years,) helping others and putting herself last. Please understand that constantly thinking of others and always asking 'what would Jesus do?' Is second nature to her.

Jason
Jason

"Wake up to the reality that there really, really, really are people who do not want to work and are perfectly happy peeing on walls and asking for handouts."You really believe that?  Do you really believe that they are happy?  Like, seriously, HAPPY?  Give me a break.  And that first sentence?  That isn't your idea of Christianity?  What Christian church do you belong to that makes you think that?  

And, by the way, go back and read Ellen's comments.  I think you'll see that she is not "bashing" Christians. 

In closing, I really suggest that you donate some of your time to a shelter or a kitchen sometime.  I think you'll be amazed at what you learn.  

Downtown Resident
Downtown Resident

Everybody else in these comments generalize the homeless to fit whatever narrative, pro or con, they have in their head, no reason for Guy Smiley not to also.

rumpunch
rumpunch

I agree that we should crack down on all bums regardless of housing situation.  I really wasnt saying we were using the veteran status as an excuse.  What I am saying we should stop using the veteran card or the compassion to our fellow man card in order to guilt us away from dealing with the criminal element.

Funny thing is, we rid the homeless population of the criminal element, you might find the general public compassion to help increasing.

elainec
elainec

If you are looking for some good evangalizing, talk to the homeless; they carry bibles too! I have never found one that was lost....just seeking.

Notgurus
Notgurus

Honeybee, I appreciate the valid points you are making.There are no easy answers. I just think humanizing the marginalized is a start.Perhaps passing a law that requires forced commitment into a detox/treatment center for people found more than once publicly intoxicated? Perhaps jail sentences for people found publicly intoxicated after having undergone forced treatment?As a former crack addict and child of an alcoholic, I can attest to just how difficult, if not impossible it can be to break free from the grips of addiction. We cannot all be Mother Theresa who worked with the people considered to be untouchable, and who literally were. She was asked how she could minister to these people and her answer was that she saw the face of Jesus in the face of every one of the people she helped.As you can see by the tone of many, though thank God not all, of those commenting here, the segment of people referred to here are seen as being less than human and at fault for the situation they are in. It just seems to me that dehumanizing and blaming them will not facilitate any meaningful solutions.Can we, as a society, see in the faces of each and every one of those alcohol/drug addicted "bums" the face of someone we love and adore? Can we unflinchingly extend our hands and hearts in compassion? Can we learn that the inability to seek help, or the choice to refuse help is more a symptom of the disease of the addiction than an act of volition? I am no saint and am not able myself to feel and express unconditional love for these poor reprobates consistently. I am wise enough to see that real solutions are to be found in that direction. The inability of many to find love and compassion for the least among us is indicative of insular attitudes many feel towards members of the human race in general around the world. Just look at the slavery and genocide going on now. The answers to the smaller social problems we face will never really be solved until we can all see the entire human race as worthy of our love and compassion.

RTGolden
RTGolden

You think we don't have an orwellian state now?  Walk around downtown and count cameras.  Anytime you are not safely tucked away in your home (and sometimes even when you are) you are subject to electronic surveillance.  Traffic cameras, crowd cameras, home and business security systems, internet search tracking, cell phone triangulation, all these are constantly feeding someone's insatiable need to know what you are doing.All that being said, everyone enjoy your summer!!

rumpunch
rumpunch

But if we refuse to deal with the criminal element then prejudices will be on all homeless.  This is who makes the homeless look bad.  Because of the prejudices you speak of, not stopping people from pissing in public or other lewd behavior, they become the face of homelessness and therefore the current lack of compassion continues.

rumpunch
rumpunch

I think that I have used the term "bum" in place of criminal.  It does not apply to all homeless.  I think that this blog as established the difference.

rumpunch
rumpunch

I never said that the homeless were criminals. I said that some homeless are criminals.   In fact, I have been screaming all day to seperate the two issues.

I will say it again, all criminals regardless of housing situation should be prosecuted.

trannnyntraining
trannnyntraining

The criminal element is generally not those who sleep on the streets. It is those who sleep indoors. If you want to rid the world of the criminal element, good luck! They have been trying for years. Singling out a portion of society will not eradicate this human condition. They(homeless) are just the easiest target to do this to, so we inflict our prejudices.

trannnyntraining
trannnyntraining

You still don't understand that the homeless aren't criminals. Being without a residence is not criminal in itself... committing a crime is. What you are asking for is a police state; where everyone is under surveillance 24hrs a day. Orwell would be proud.

Now Trending

Dallas Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

General

Loading...