Homeless Sweet Homeless - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

October 18, 2010

Homeless Sweet Homeless

They say that death and taxes are the only two inevitabilities we can be sure of, but if you live here long enough, you can bet on the annual discussions about traffic problems, public education issues, and the homeless crisis being headline stories over and over again.

The Honolulu City Council just passed a bill that bars tents and such on urban sidewalks, but the law could take years to be put in place and cost a quarter of a million dollars or more. How this law is enforced, much like the law banning cell phone usage while driving, will be interesting, as one has to wonder if the bill sounds better than it will be in reality. The city says it doesn't have the money right now to start placing the mandated signs in urban areas, yet the bill states the law must take effect in 60 days. Do these people actually talk to one another when they mandate or even suggest such wide-ranging plans?

And frankly, why this law applies only to some areas and not others smacks of elitism, much like the quick efforts to move people out of the tourist-area parks around Waikiki, when it took years to move people around from leeward area beaches and parks. Homelessness is a complex problem, and simply shuffling people around will not resolve anything, other than maybe moving people in need further out of eye sight, for now. Will that make us really feel better about our efforts? Think about it…

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