Monday, June 23, 2008

Hitting Us Where We (Don't) Live

A piece in the Fish Wrapper (we can at least give them the dignity of capitalization) gives a progress report on a study of homelessness in L. A. County released 18 months ago, entitled "A Reality-based Approach to Ending Homelessness in Los Angeles." More like a non-progress report. Allow us then, to briefly recap 'sup w/ this stuff for you busy people w/ your houses & cars & families & generally pathetically empty bourgeois lives that will work you all into an early grave:

* There is still not enough affordable housing. * Supportive housing remains scarce. * Emergency and transitional housing and services are in short supply.

* Government health and welfare programs remain inadequate. For more than 25 years, general relief, the county's last-resort program for unemployed and disabled people, has been $221 a month -- $2,652 a year -- for a single adult, far below the federal poverty level of $10,400 for a one-person household.

This is what's keeping our body & soul together. Barely.
* More than half the homeless receive food stamps, the most important federal emergency food program. Typically, however, food stamps, which are distributed once a month, last only 2 1/2 weeks.
Even the spoiled middle & upper classes may have noticed that food prices have been increasing of late.
* Although many homeless people are employed and are employable, their pay is far below what L.A. County defines as a living wage -- $11.84 an hour. Unfortunately, job-training programs cannot offset this market reality.
PLEASE NOTE: Our last two jobs, in expensive sections of Los Angeles County, for major corporate employers Borders & Kinko's, did not pay us as much as $9.00/hr., after about four years in each insufferable hellhole. That's about three dollars/hr. below the living wage. Now ask us why we suffer from depression. And, middle-class pigs, ask yourselves what's going to happen when the anger causing that depression is focused on YOU!!!!
* L.A.'s respect for the civil liberties of homeless people remains disgraceful. In 2006, the city and the Los Angeles Police Department instituted the Safer City Initiative, which combined aggressive policing against drug dealing, prostitution and thievery on skid row with more social services for those in need. The promised services never materialized, but more than 18,000 skid row residents have been cited or arrested since the program began in September 2006, most often for petty offenses such as littering or crosswalk violations.
The City of Santa Monica's no better. This reporter doesn't need a Community Services Officer asking us if we're schizophrenic, & then telling us to "keep taking our medication" after we advised him we suffer from depression. We shouldn't have to answer any questions like that, but of course not responding to the police or standing up for one's rights is the best way to have those "rights" violated. Listen, Mr. Community Services Officer, they may not let you carry a gun, & you may wear khaki instead of pseudo-Gestapo dark navy blue, but that doesn't make you any less of a pin-dicked fascist wanna-be.
* Most municipalities in L.A. County spend less than 1% of their operating budgets on homeless services or housing.
Here's virtually the only positive note found:
* Political leadership to combat homelessness has improved somewhat.
Funny, huh? The "political leadership" is "somewhat improved." Political leadership, our pasty white ass. There's no such thing in This Great Nation of Ours™. Thanks so fucking much for all the help, Southern California, from a would-be spree killer who, day by day, is being pushed closer to acting on his deepest, most murderous desires .

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