The war on the poor and a note about collateral damage

An AP story: Cities passing more laws to make homelessness a crime, says report. The report is by a homeless advocacy group by the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty.

The report, which was based on a review of policies enacted by 187 cities over a decade, said bans on living in vehicles increased by 143 percent. Those laws can be particularly devastating because they often lead to vehicle impoundment, and people can lose all of their belongings, disrupting their ability to work or attend school, Foscarinis said.

The report called several such policies unconstitutional. The group said panhandling is protected by free-speech rights and preventing sleeping in public could be considered cruel and unusual punishment.

In Reno, the ‘camping’ along the river, especially in winter, is an ongoing problem due both to the concern for those out in the weather but also for what they leave behind and the mess they make.

Collateral damage shows up a bit higher in the food chain. YouTube is full of channels by people engaged in stealth camping or otherwise using their vehicles as their domicile. There are also the more typical RVer’s who encounter shunning by laws that prohibit parking at certain times, in certain places, or for anything more than a few hours. The rest areas in many states are also off limits for RVer’s who want to rest more than an hour or two. Nevada is a contrast as it allows 18 hour stops at its rest areas and many of them have dump stations for RV waste.

Nomadic Fanatic is a channel by a class C RV enthusiast (with a cat). He recently described his unpleasant experience Northeast RVing and the things he learned. He often found motels had lower rates than RV parks. RV’s were often prohibited on public lands. RV oriented facilities were scarce.

Even in much of the wide open west, the NFS and BLM are increasing restrictions that squeeze the ‘retiree’ in an old RV trying to find a place to stay that doesn’t drain his pension.

These are reasons by private parking lots, like Walmart, are popular for overnight parking and why the BLM long term visitor’s areas near Quartzite in Arizona are popular over winter.

These are the modern Gypsies – of course, in this era, the traditional Roma Gypsy has the ‘persecuted minority‘ thing going but the real story is about an invasion of the neighborhood by people who have not committed to belonging to it, whether homeless, RVer, or Gypsy. Rver’s are generally more easier rounded up for placement in their reservations (a.k.a. commercial, regulated, and taxed campgrounds). The homeless and the transients present another challenge as they tend to resent being rounded up and installed in approved shelters or whatnot. It is the social dilemma: just what can you do, should you do, for those who don’t want your help?

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