Up to us to help
Talk about irony. An Oct. 3 headline reads, "Hurt bird draws sympathy," and then the article directly beneath it states, "City wants homeless out," Our homeless need to be assisted, just as we wish to help any living thing. Please support those who are working to help the homeless — Goodwill, Father Fred, Safe Harbor and others are excellent examples. Homelessness affects us all — the city is right to be working to end it as our citizens are concerned for our safety. But it is up to us to help.
Homeless are people
I am writing to you concerning the Oct. 3 article headlined "City wants homeless out." While I appreciate the reporting being done on the events that took place at the city commissioner's meeting, it bothers me that nothing was said about the causes of homelessness in Traverse City and whether or not solutions for the root issue were addressed, not just the results of the root issue.
The discussion as reported portrayed the homeless as a nuisance, as a "problem to be dealt with" and not as people, not as fellow human beings. I love Traverse City, and I want it to remain as picturesque, as welcoming, as charming as it has been since I was a child. However, I do not wish that at the cost of dehumanization.
People are sleeping in parks for a reason. What is that reason? If we don't have a good answer for that question, we aren't doing enough as a community to help those who have been disenfranchised. Banning alcohol in public spaces is not unreasonable, but to think that is going to fix the problem of the "drunken bums," the "dope heads," the "alcoholics" is not only silly, it is irresponsible.