Monday, December 29, 2008

Editorial: In the Afterglow of the Safe Ground March

The December 23 Safe Ground March was a success at bringing attention to the effort to combat the absurd situation that currently exists where unsheltered homeless people are outlaws for daring to breathe.

SacHo blog salutes those that co-sponsored the event, and especially the people of SHOC and SHOC Homeless Leadership Project for their work as planners and administrators to make the march and rally successful. Their effort galvinized the homeless community in righteous support of the decriminalization of homelessness. And, it extended awareness to the citizens of Sacramento that 'there is a problem here' that needs to be addressed.

We are at a place in time when homelessness is a fastly growing "problem." Many citizens who would never have imagined they would be displaced and penniless are going to be. [But here's a not-secret secret: There are ALWAYS people on the street who would never have imagined they would find themselves homeless and penniless.] Homelessness, today, is up-close and personal. To the average citizenry we can today say "We are YOU, more now than ever. Yet, we have always fully been you."

The funny thing [that isn't really funny] is that proposals for addressing homeless problems will save money for the community. By allowing for there to be safe ground where tents can be erected, wildly expensive policies that roust and criminalize homeless people can be stopped. And, by making a pathway out of homelessness [which begins by making being homeless less pointlessly time-devouring], valuable & talented people can be returned to gainful employment. Today, homelessness is a bear trap: "Without an address, you can't get an address. Without a job, you can't get a job."

C'mon people now. Smile on your brother. Everybody get together. Try to love one another, right now.

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