San Francisco business owners have had enough, as they are threatening to withhold tax payments. The business owners’ message is clear: remove the homeless people, encampments, and trash surrounding the area and implement a robust police presence.
According to Fox News:
“The Castro Merchants Association, which represents 125 businesses, sent a letter to city officials earlier this month outlining three demands: 35 shelter beds for “mentally ill and substance-abusing individuals who have taken up residence in the Castro,” monthly metrics on services offered to the homeless in the Castro and a devised plan following a homeless person’s refusal for services.”
Had the leaders in San Francisco been competent, they would have sensed the homelessness crisis and open-air drug market getting out of hand, and they would have taken action. These are not demands that the residents should make. But because no one responded to the crisis, it has only gotten worse, and the business owners are right. They should withhold their tax payments until this issue is resolved, especially because Gavin Newsom has “invested” billions in taxpayer money to solve this crisis. Money is not the issue when it comes to homelessness. They have no plan; they do not want to fund rescue missions, and they do not want to hire mental health workers. As the situation worsens, they watch it happen from the sidelines.
For all the talk about caring for people, California leaders don’t seem to care that homeless people are dying on the streets every single day. They are overdosing on fentanyl and other drugs and police officers are not allowed to offer the homeless treatment or “arrest.” The arrest part is basically handcuffing them, but ultimately, taking them for treatment. Many former homeless people who former California gubernatorial candidate Michael Shellenberger interviewed said that had it not been for the police offering them help, they would not be alive today.
Some people think we should never arrest addicts, even when they break the law, but Eric, who was a homeless meth addict, says he had to be incarcerated.
Eric, who's now a harm reduction worker, says the meth/fentanyl addicts he works with won't recover without an intervention. pic.twitter.com/hC6xWlrmez
— Michael Shellenberger (@ShellenbergerMD) April 11, 2022
People say lack of housing forces local residents into the streets, but James says he came from Texas to San Francisco for the drugs, the non-enforcement of anti-camping laws, and the $820/month in welfare & food stamps. James says he sold fentanyl, 2 weeks ago, to a 15-year-old. pic.twitter.com/5qMr6tmlWs
— Michael Shellenberger (@ShellenbergerMD) February 9, 2022
The Merchants Associaton said:
“They need shelter and/or services and they need them immediately. Our community is struggling to recover from lost business revenue, from burglaries and never-ending vandalism/graffiti (often committed by unhoused persons) and we implore you to take action.”
Democrats claim that the middle class is the backbone of America; they claim that small businesses must be supported every which way. Many Americans agree with the messaging; however, the Democrats’ actions demonstrate anything but the message they preach during every election cycle.
Dave Karraker is the co-president of the association and co-owner of a gym in the Castro. He said:
“If the city can’t provide the basic services for them to become a successful business, then what are we paying for?”
“Whatever they’re doing isn’t working. We’re just seeing constant vandalism, constant drug use in public, people passed out on the sidewalk, people having psychotic breakdowns, and it’s just not something a small-business owner should have to deal with.”
Terrance Alan is the co-president of the association and owner of a Castro dispensary. He said:
“Every day we wake up and have to help people on the street. We have to clean up feces on the street. We have to clear our people from doorways, so we can open our businesses. It’s not fair.”
As I have stated in previous articles: California should take the same approach as Helping Up Mission in Baltimore, Maryland. The mission has rehabilitation programs for every man, woman, and child in need of shelter and/or mental help, and the folks who went through the mission’s rehabilitation program now work for the mission and have returned to their regular lives.
Until California leaders understand that “housing first” is not the solution, this problem will continue.
Los Angeles, on the other hand, has the opportunity in November to revive the city by voting for Rick Caruso for Mayor.
Drugs and substance abuse issues are ravaging LA’s unhoused population. I have a plan to crack down on illicit drug manufacturing and provide support to those who need it most. Learn more about my plan to help Angelenos get back on their feet at https://t.co/ukOEBhVdZh. pic.twitter.com/mAOQFX1KwW
— Rick J. Caruso (@RickCarusoLA) July 29, 2022