Clearing homeless encampments on busy roads is the minimal backstop against progressive deterioration.
In an all-too-familiar sequence of events, progressives made social media noise to shame a politician with whom they disagreed — in this case, Providence City Councilman Nicholas Narducci, who helped the city clean up a homeless encampment under a Rt. 146 overpass — and the news media jumped right in to tow their line, framing it as something that had to be “defended.” Neither WPRI nor the Providence Journal, for example, bothered to talk to any neighbors or investigate the effect the encampment might be having on the neighborhood.
Far-left, anti-cop Councilwoman Kat Kerwin took to Twitter to calling the move “heartless” and to ask, “Who is being hurt by people being there?” That’s a good question for mainstream journalists. Wonder why they didn’t try to answer it.
This performance is meant to keep the progressive stone rolling downhill. It works something like this:
- Progressive policies reduce opportunity, increase dependence on government, and stretch tax dollars thin.
- This creates holds for people to fall into (especially those with few supports and other problems).
- When things get really bad for those folks, they take to the street, eventually congregating in encampments, which degrades the perception of the area and makes it a less comfortable place in which to live and do business.
- Authorities do their jobs and enforce housing regulations.
- Progressives push to end policing of the encampments.
- This makes the economy and neighborhood even worse, creating more holes for more people.
- Authorities continue to do their jobs and enforce standards for public behavior, particularly related to safety.
- Progressives go after the idea of policing.
- Things get worse.
For an area that’s trending progressive, the only question is where people can muster the fortitude to stop it, and frankly, this sort of homeless encampment is a stark and important threshold. You can’t have people living in such place in such a way. You just can’t.
To be sure, simply clearing them out when they pop up only pauses and moves the problem elsewhere, without helping the people who’ve fallen into those progressive holes, and the action is therefore insufficient, but it’s fundamental backstop. What’s needed is to start pushing that stone back up the hill Of course, progressives will shriek even louder as the society solves the problems of the people progressives are professing to care about, but it’s the only way.