Adam Johnson writes at The Column Substack about how Democratic city leaders are relying upon increasingly inhumane tricks that don’t solve the homelessness problem.
What we are seeing in more and more cities is wrong. Instead of solving the problem, city leaders are creating Potemkin situations. As Johnson describes:
The goal, as I laid out in March, is to simply harass and arrest unhoused people from important areas into less important ones, while scooping up many for petty crime so they can languish in jail. This way electeds look like they’re Doing Something about “the homelessness problem,” but the underlying issue isn’t meaningfully addressed, much less solved. But police are kept busy and further legitimized while wealthy areas are less and less likely to have to look at the logical result of runaway inequality and soaring housing prices.
Corporate media, pandering to the all important “angry homeowner,” is concerned entirely with the aesthetics of “cleaning up” “homeless encampments,” not the long-term housing status and fortunes of the human beings who actually live there.
Johnson shows us examples of cities cutting down trees, adding rocks, and building internment camps rather than focusing on solutions that actually can help people. We have to do better, because this problem is going to continue to get worse.
And, we should remember when some of these politicians seek re-election or try to move up to a higher office.