From the LA Times article, “Garcetti’s A Bridge Home Homeless Problem Has Mixed Results.”
A formerly homeless addict refutes all the tolerant and feel-good ideas that are bandied about by Garcetti and other enablers. Here is what WEHO LIBERAL said in a letter to the LAT:
“I’m someone who once was homeless multiple times, but always stayed in shelters no matter what. NEVER, ever camp outside! It’s a dead end and that behavior is only for people with serious behavioral problems, alcoholism, drug addiction and mental illness. If you lose your housing? You do NOT camp outside. Period.
I’ve posted multiple times about homelessness on LAT over the years. The last time I did, Nita Lilyveld (not sure if I spelled her name right) wrote about 2 young homeless people in their early twenties that I reached out to offering support and even to take them to dinner. After 2 or 3 texts between one of them where they kept saying they’d follow up with me, they flaked. No more texts. They didn’t follow up or stay in touch.
I am done with this nonsense. And I say that as a liberal Democrat who supported all of these shelters being built. Enough is enough. My mother was mentally ill her entire life and constantly refused treatment. Even when I was struggling with my own addiction, I ALWAYS made sure I had shelter.
I live in Hollywood. You see these people every day. I see them sitting or lying around their campsites when I leave for work. I come home from work and they’re still there, doing nothing but eating, urinating, defecating, some listening to the radio or watching TV on their phones. But they are always there and they make zero effort to change their lives or better their situation.
They ask me for cigarettes, they ask me for money. Their laziness and refusal to change infuriates me. I was homeless, multiple times. I’m sick and tired of LAT columnists like Steve Lopez and Nita Lilyveld pleading to help people who simply do not want to help themselves–or in the case of Lopez, only interested in finding a charity case that they can champion in press and on TV for his own ego. No, I do not care to hear about how hard Nathanial Ayers’ life is when he refuses to take his medication that would help save his life and better his living situation. My own mother refused treatment for years so I have zero sympathy for people like him who literally are victims of their own refusal to simply do what could get them housed and improve their lives.
Look, being homeless and living in either a shelter or housing provided by local government was no picnic and no fun. I was miserable. My addiction was my responsibility and I deal with it and take responsibility for it. But Lopez, Lilyveld and others like them have their own faults and shortcomings, too. It’s morally right to have compassion for others, absolutely. But people who refuse to help themselves even when others try to help them and move Heaven & Earth to do it are not worthy or deserving of compassion. They are not money pits; they are emotional black holes who will drain the time, energy and resource of everyone around them because they refuse to do what they need to do.
I’m living paycheck-to-paycheck. Yes, I’ve been lucky and yes, I have white male privilege. But as an incest survivor and an HIV+ positive drug addict in recovery, I no longer buy what Lopez, Lilyveld, LAHSA and others like them keep preaching. It is infuriating and it’s becoming obscene. I tried to help 2 homeless young people less than half my age last year after reading about them here. For God sakes, I offered to feed them more than once. They kept making excuses and then just stopped reaching out to me.
I am done with supporting this policy and their behavior. We all need help sometimes. God knows I spent years exhausting people and it took me a long time to get my act together. But sooner or later, you have to reach deep down inside yourself, confront your problems and change your behavior as much as possible to save your own life.
I am not perfect and all of my problems are not solved. But as someone who sees homeless people every day who sit around all day doing nothing, my compassion for all but a select few is pretty much drained and gone.”