If you go to various cities in California, one of the first things you’ll notice is the shocking amount of homeless people that are camped out on the streets. I wish I could say these were people just down on their luck, but where homeless camps pop up, an inordinate amount of drug use does as well.
And for some reason, Austin, Texas, wants to be just like them.
Austin’s Mayor Steve Adler made it legal for homeless people to set up tents on city streets so long as they aren’t blocking pathways. In an interview, Adler said he doesn’t think that this will cause problems like it does in Los Angeles or San Francisco, but Austin residents, especially women, are worried about safety concerns.
Austin TX moves to abolish city ordinances that forbid camping on city streets
Every area that has removed bans against camping on city streets has been FLOODED with waves of homeless people! I beg you all to oppose this!
Don't let Texas make the same mistakes California made!! pic.twitter.com/UxYfLLWSNn
— Cali-Conservative (@CaliConserv1) June 23, 2019
Texas Governor Greg Abbott warned back in June that if Austin does go through with it, then he’ll be forced to bring the power of Texas down on the city.
“If Austin— or any other Texas city—permits camping on city streets it will be yet another local ordinance the State of Texas will override,” tweeted Abbott. “At some point cities must start putting public safety & common sense first.”
If Austin— or any other Texas city—permits camping on city streets it will be yet another local ordinance the State of Texas will override.
At some point cities must start putting public safety & common sense first.
There are far better solutions for the homeless & citizens. https://t.co/xYezoovVCg
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) June 24, 2019
Fast forward to July, and the ordinance is already causing major problems. Needless to say, Abbott is not happy. Abbott took to Twitter once again to show people what kind of dangers the policies Austin enacted are bringing on. Quote tweeting a Texas resident who caught an accident caused by homeless people darting into traffic caused a major accident near downtown Austin.
“Look at this insanity caused by Austin’s reckless homeless policy. All state-imposed solutions are on the table including eliminating local sovereign immunity for damages and injuries like this caused by a city’s homeless policy,” tweeted Abbott.
“The horror stories are piling up,” he added.
Look at this insanity caused by Austin’s reckless homeless policy.
All state-imposed solutions are on the table including eliminating local sovereign immunity for damages and injuries like this caused by a city’s homeless policy.
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) July 2, 2019
Adler seems to be willing to stand his ground, however. He noted that Abbott was “misled” in a tweet and blamed the outrage around homeless camps on people trying to scare and lie to others.
Homelessness: Most trying to seriously address concerns of both people and public places. A few trying to scare: willing to lie. Even @GovAbbott was misled. Who are these people? Thanks to @AshleyG_KVUE and @KVUE for verifying what’s true — and not. https://t.co/0iSQ7GBLrY
— Mayor Adler (@MayorAdler) July 5, 2019
Austin residents fired back.
This isn’t a lie pic.twitter.com/81D5l4LqCt
— South Austin Texan (@SoAustinTx) July 5, 2019
183 &Pond Springs Rd. Underpass less than a 1/2 mile from elementary school and have found multiple used needles in the general area, including the entrance of my Apt complex. pic.twitter.com/3IGJI82ukZ
— Eric Singletary (@Pure_Singletary) July 5, 2019
It’s likely that Abbott is currently cooking up something in the legislature with the help of Republicans, though if this continues to spiral out of control, Austin may end up just like San Francisco, which has become a dangerous place to be with all the homeless and hard drugs that literally litter the streets.