Monday, July 21, 2008

Democratic Convention Means Hide And Seek With Homeless

On August 25-28 Denver will host the democratic national convention.  According to the Rocky Mountain News:

The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless plans to get 500 movie tickets as well as passes to the Denver Zoo, Denver Museum of Nature and Science and other cultural facilities for the people it helps.

Bus tickets will be provided for events beyond walking distance, said John Parvensky, the non-profit's president.

Many day shelters will have expanded hours during the convention, and big screen TVs are being donated to some shelters so patrons can watch convention goings-on without being caught up in the mayhem.

"We're trying to let folks know what activities are planned, and what other places they'll be able to go without being harassed," Parvensky said.

So when the elites come to town the homeless have to go.   Pavensky asserts that, "A person who typically sits under a tree in a park that is now occupied by 1,000 protesters won't have the peace and quiet they're desiring. Particularly those with mental illness can't cope with crowds. Our concern going forward is that the city doesn't control everything - the Secret Service plays a role," he said. "We don't know what will happen if protests get out of control and people get caught up in something they didn't intend to."

Okay perhaps I am being cynical but it seems that all  of these "special treats" are just a way to hide the homeless from public view.  Where is the concern for their welfare on a daily basis?  Hiding them away from the media does not reduce the problem of homelessness, and treating them like criminals for being in spaces that we have claimed as public, is morally reprehensible.  The homeless constitute  an invisible class in our society. Daily we shuffle past them with averted eyes as though recognizing our shared humanity risks the possibility of sharing their fate.  The citizens of working/middle class residents of Denver have far more in common with the homeless than they do with the interloping politicians that will be visiting for a few days.  Whenever we bow to the concerns of the ruling elite we are participating in false class consciousness. It is due to the endless greed of the rich bourgeoisie that homelessness continues to exist, and to hide it from their view because they uncomfortable with the results of their avarice, is to collude with our economic slavery.


4 comments:

Danny said...

Okay perhaps I am being cynical but it seems that all of these "special treats" are just a way to hide the homeless from public view.

Then I'm cynical too because my first question is, "Out of all the days of all the years why is this the one time is when the city decides to do this?"

If I'm not mistaken China is actually doing something similar to this with poor Chinese citizens in Bejing for the upcoming Olympics.

neocatholic3000 said...

Seconded - and what happens when the protests AREN'T huge (it's possible)? And is this REALLY the first and only time Denver has had large crowds downtown that could affect the homeless? Yeah, right...

Nice about the free tickets and larger shelters. Now, can they be a PERMANENT thing? Or, hey, how about larger shelters and more support services like drug treatment and medical care? Oh wait.. that would be helping reduce the problem.

Anonymous said...

"Nice about the free tickets and larger shelters. Now, can they be a PERMANENT thing? Or, hey, how about larger shelters and more support services like drug treatment and medical care? Oh wait.. that would be helping reduce the problem. "

Larger shelters and more support services like drug treatment and medical care and free tickets and bus passes to intellectual stuff like museums, zoos, libraries, etc.!

neocatholic3000 said...

Anon: true, I should have said "and," not "or." Didn't mean to say otherwise.