Housing Dec 6, 2017 at 4:00 am

Now the recent decision to expand no-sit sidewalks has created a headache for Mayor Ted Wheeler


I wonder how many people are killed, jailed, or otherwise brutalized in the name of "safety" every year? Whenever I hear public officials invoke the words "public safety", I know something very bad is about to take place.
Whenever I see Daniel Luke post a comment anywhere, I know it's going to be stupid and ignorant. Daniel Luke has never had his wife or son harassed or attacked by drugged out vagrants on a Portland sidewalk. Daniel Luke is a large, white man who doesn't get harassed or attacked, so he dismisses the concerns of all other citizens who are simply trying to move around and go about their lives in a safe manner. There are lots of places in the City of Portland to sit if sitting is what you want to do, including benches, parks, and other open spaces. The only places for pedestrians to walk are sidewalks. They should be for walking. This isn't a difficult concept.
Does anyone ever survey women having to walk around downtown how they feel about this issue? And I'm all for people being able to sit down to rest, but the merchants and citizens are not talking about people taking a break, they're talking about people who use the sidewalk as their home -- with all that entails, including defecation. In my neighborhood, a bunch of homeless guys have essentially taken over a portion of the walk, and spend all day shooting craps, drinking and sometimes loudly harassing passersby. On the other, an elderly homeless gentleman who has nothing to do with the crap-shooters, makes sure his shopping cart is out of the way, never bothers a soul and regularly moves so he doesn't become a nuisance by staying in one spot. Most people actually do feel sorry for the homeless, but I rarely see these articles address the fact that there are people among the homeless who have no problem making life miserable for everyone who comes into their area. The Mercury seems to think it's a bleeding heart vs. heartless scenario, but it's a little deeper than that -- some people absolutely refuse to take into account the way their lives impact others, whether that's a CEO draining pension fund or a meth head who refuses repeated offers of help and chooses to bother working class people simply trying to get on the train at night.

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