Two of Los Angeles' major challenges - homelessness and festering heaps of uncollected garbage - go hand-in-hand. If Mayor Eric Garcetti had even a pinch of common sense his latest proposal, involving both topics, could be useful.
"Thanks to the support of our City Council, we are doubling storage for Skid Row residents who need a safe place to store their belongings. The new Bin site will be filled with community spaces and resources to support nearly every Angeleno experiencing homelessness in Skid Row."
Through the eyes of a problem solver this looks like the perfect way to get Skid Row residents to clean up their contaminated "belongings" on their own. "Why, hello there, my unhoused neighbor. I've got a great place where you can bring and store your stuff! Oh, sure, it might look like a trash can, but it's not. See, when we put the trash bins in a warehouse and line them up and assign them numbers, then they're storage places. Kinda like in the Indiana Jones movies."
Once all of the bins were filled, the resourceful Mayor would have the warehouse sealed off as a contaminated site, and destroy the belongings.
But Eric Garcetti is not a problem-solving, resourceful person. Eric Garcetti is a clueless moron who was dragged by all sides on Twitter after his self-congratulatory post.
Okay, okay, maybe this wasn't such a horrible idea that it briefly united left and right. Maybe he was just having a problem explaining the full breadth of his genius plans to help the mentally ill, drug addicted, and vagrants who inhabit the streets of his fair city. Maybe, just like many text messages, it didn't come across quite as he'd planned.
It does send a terrible message - that government will look the other way and enable people who are drug addicted, criminals, or bums to persist in their destructive, non-contributor lifestyle. For the most part Garcetti supporters agreed that the trash cans sent a terrible message, but the message they saw was completely different from the one Garcetti critics saw. According to the progressives, giving Skid Row residents trash cans is demeaning and, surely, euthanizing them is the next step.
Having a dedicated, indoor space in which homeless people can store their belongings isn't enough for progressives. They must also have a place which doesn't "degrade the dignity of the person."
You wouldn't want someone who defecates on a sidewalk to feel degraded, now, would you?
Given the city's failing infrastructure and imminent pandemic potential, it would seem that Garcetti's priorities might be something other than trash cans for the homeless.
That money could have been put to better use by helping the city's low income housing department catch up a few years.
Garcetti's "RecycLA" debacle, in which recycling and trash hauling rights were essentially auctioned off to the highest bidder, is widely credited as a major cause of the city's trash pile problem. So this voter's question shouldn't be a surprise:
Many people were stunned that Garcetti could seriously focus on this as a huge win while ignoring issues contributing to the problem.
While Los Angeles' homeless population, the overwhelming majority of whom suffer from untreated mental illness and drug addiction, struggle to keep warm while sleeping on the streets in the winter, they can take comfort in the fact that Mayor Garcetti gave their belongings a "home" in a safe, enclosed shelter.
(Republished from RedState with permission of the author.)