Pallet shelter concerns
Re “Shelter in the spotlight” (CN&R, March 10, 2022):
More to consider concerning the new Pallet camp…
· The Jesus Center’s quid-pro-quo 2017 “Memorandum of Understanding” with the city of Chico, leading to the destruction (ultimately, the literal demolition) of our only soup kitchen.
· The center’s Robert Marbut, his high-dollar consulting contract and the Marbut methodology’s ongoing negative impact on Chico’s homeless human rights record.
· The center’s calculated morphing into a high-barrier homeless reform center, seemingly oriented toward a condescending, Bible-based rescue approach to “worthy poor” women—though deaths on the streets are 80 percent homeless men.
· The center’s “success story” culture and marketing.
· The center’s too-close relationship with the Chico Police Department.
· The near-universal disdain for the Jesus Center among the chronically homeless; their having experienced years of patronizing and punishing policies and practices.
· The mayor’s publicly stated resentment regarding Pallet camp costs (such as utilities), though the city’s “enforcement” powers are immediately reinstated (sweeping and arresting) once in technical compliance with the Warren v. City of Chico settlement; that is, regained while possibly seeking to avoid the expense of serving that swath of people conveniently deemed “services resistant” and always in demand as fodder for Butte County’s incarceration industry.
· The daunting physical challenge of making a moonscape of 177 tightly-packed plastic boxes feel like home.
· The proximity of car races to cardboard-thin shelters, 700 feet from 700-horsepower, unmuffled engines.
Pot; no holes
Anyone else notice we have potholes in our roads? What would be a solution? Money, of course.
Ever been to Shasta Lake city? Man, they’ve got some really well-paved roads. How? That city got in early on allowing pot dispensaries and raked in some taxes. Smart.
We have the opposite of smart in Butte County.
Two for Biden
I see in the news that President Biden’s approval rating is down to 40 percent. With me, and most folks I know, it’s up around the 90s and climbing every day.
Joe Biden has brought us through the pandemic and kept the economy moving in a positive direction. He is working to fight climate change, the greatest danger to our planet’s future. He has restored our relations with NATO and our western allies.
Can you imagine the Russia-Ukraine conflict with Trump still in charge?
I note, with no surprise, how fashionable it is for the devotees of Donald Trump to blame President Biden for everything not being perfect. They crab about the economy and inflation, but with Trump still in office, we would be looking back at thin gruel in a cold hovel as the good old days, still mired in the third Republican recession in as many administrations—Trump’s being the worst since the Great Depression. And his administration would be doing everything possible to feudalize our society.
Putin’s intent to annex Ukraine would still have been carried out, but Trump would have turned a blind eye on his buddy’s actions there, and NATO would have been eviscerated by a second Trump administration. And Trump would still be laundering money for the Russian oligarchs.
I wake up every morning profoundly grateful that (regardless of what you are hearing in the right-wing echo chamber) we the people rejected four more years of an increasingly despotic crime family.