Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Downtown Chico: Summer destination of the homeless

Dear Chico City Council (yes you again),

It seems that I am always writing you concerning something but your actions continue to warrant my opinion. At your council meeting last night you chose to turn a blind eye on one of Chico’s biggest problems. In a 2 to 4 vote with one abstaining you shot down an ordinance that would have kept people from calling Chico’s downtown area home and using its sidewalks and business entrances as bedrooms from the hours of 7am till 11pm. I frequently visit the downtown area on the weekends and as I move from one drinking establishment to another and being one with future political aspirations I like to chat it up with my potential voters. Some of these people are the ones that litter every corner of the downtown area with sleeping bags and guitar in hand and a dog by their side. After numerous conversations I’ve learned that the majority of Chico’s homeless are not there for unforeseen circumstances but by their own choice. Yes people, most of them come from good homes and just want to live the “free life”. It’s not that their parents didn't hug them enough; it’s that they didn't spank them enough. These same people who could be productive members of society are drinking, smoking the hippie lettuce, leaving trash and harassing the numerous people of this town who try to stimulate its economy. Instead of voting this ordinance into law and giving them 16 hours every day to go out and find a job and actually contribute to society you've giving them reason to celebrate. I know there are exceptions to my argument. Mental illness is a horrible thing and can strike anyone and I’m all for helping someone who is down on their luck. The news is full of stories everyday of someone who ended up on the streets and fought their way back from the brink. The key message to this is that they took advantage of the help they were offered. Ask one of the many who call Broadway or Main street home at night if they would like a job and they laugh at you and ask you instead to drop a dollar in the hat for their next bottle of cheap booze or sack of Humboldt’s finest and why do most of them have dogs? If you have to live on the streets you by no means can afford to feed a pet. People who own businesses in downtown Chico along with towns across America put their heart and souls into them. It’s their way of life. Why is it that the homeless continue to dictate if there businesses succeed or fail? The more this issue is left alone the more Chico store owners suffer. It continues to add to the problems that are chasing people away from this town that has seen its charm fade as it turns into just another spot on the map. I call on business owners, locals, students and alumni to show the city council that we want the town back they continue to take away from us….We are Chico, California

PS. Happy hump day peeps on this southern weather having afternoon and remember….You don’t have to like my politics, you just have to agree with them. 

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