I’m as frustrated as you about vagrants and the local government lefties who enable them. These filthy feral humans camp on the sidewalks, poop in the gutters, accost respectable citizens and beg for handouts.
And the vagrants are even worse.
Several questions must be asked. First, no one seriously contends that people can’t get a job in this wealthy society bespeckled with help-wanted signs. So why exactly are vagrants on the streets?
There are two answers. First, it’s because we encourage them. We give them free stuff ranging from free food to free money to free sympathy to free drugs. We declare them to be victims, which in today’s culture is a more heroic status than hero. In the old days, we told them to get off the streets else they’d earn a night in the drunk tank, while now we reward, romanticize and glorify them.
It’s as if we’re leaving unsecured trash cans out overnight and then wondering why the raccoons keep coming and trashing the yard. But since they inexplicably do, we deem them heroic victims deserving of more and better stuff.
It’s illustrated by our lexicon. Vagrants were originally called “vagrants.” That wasn’t a derogatory term. Merriam Webster still defines “vagrant” as a person “wandering about from place to place usually with no means of support.” But the word “vagrant” was canceled for political incorrectness because it became associated with . . . vagrancy. Duh.
“Vagrant” was then replaced with “homeless” but we canceled that too because – you know where this is headed – it became associated with vagrancy. Now it’s “people experiencing homelessness.” I suppose that will last a year or two before it gets canceled for – yep – becoming associated with vagrancy.
The second reason for this epidemic of vagrants enabled by lefties is that we institutionalize far fewer people in prisons, mental institutions and drug treatment facilities. That’s where they belong, for their good and ours.
But solving problems is not the left’s objective. Their objective is to feel good about themselves. They get the most feel-good for the dollar (taxpayer dollars, of course) by enabling vagrants, not by stopping them.
I also suspect that the left likes having vagrants loitering around because they think it reflects badly on America.
Here’s another question. Why do vagrants squat downtown rather than in, say, suburbia where there’s much more open space? And why on the downtown sidewalks, medians and parks rather than, say, under viaducts where they’d be out of the rain and snow?
The answer to that question reveals the ultimate source of this problem. It involves the basic human need for love or, in the absence of that, attention. You and I get love and attention from our families, friends, jobs, neighbors, and even, to some extent, our houses and other material possessions.
Vagrants in contrast, despite the left’s glorification of them, have tiny miserable lives with no friends, no jobs, no neighbors, no house, no prospects and no love. And so they get attention where they can. They get in your face because that’s where you notice them.
A final question. Why do the voters of big cities keep re-electing local lefties who exacerbate the vagrancy problem rather than solving it?
The answer is that the voters in big cities are themselves local lefties. Like their elected officials, their reaction to any given problem is not to solve it, but to milk it. They use it to feel good about their thoughts on the subject. Think of it as emotional masturbation.
It’s the same sentiment that causes them to post ridiculous and contradictory virtue-signaling signs in their yard. Such as the one proclaiming that in their house they believe in platitudes like “Water is Life” and “Science is Real” even though every real scientist in the world would agree that water is not life, but is just a simple molecule with the chemical name of dihydrogen monoxide.
But not all big city residents are ignorant, preening lefties. I’ve heard of some residents actually solving the vagrancy problem, rather than just wallowing in feel-goodery about it.
They’ve resorted to pepper spray. Pepper spray is easily obtainable at any sporting goods store and comes in everything from big cans of bear spray to tiny keychain versions. It hurts like hell, but seldom causes lasting injury (though it could).
I certainly understand the motivations of these problem-solving pepper-sprayers. They’re fed up with the vagrants and their lefty enablers. That said, I disapprove of their effective but illegal method for driving them away. So please don’t pepper-spray them.
And don’t pepper-spray the vagrants either.
I propose that instead these loathsome creatures be given a place away from downtown, equipped with portalets and clean water. The vagrants can join them there.
The vagrants will thereby get their needed attention from the lefties, the lefties will get their daily dose of feel-good from the vagrants, and they can poop all over one another. Cholera has that effect.
Even the raccoons will leave them alone.