The Politics Of Homelessness


The problems of the homeless are real, but as with anything, the details of reality depend on the agenda of the person telling the story. Unfortunately, in the case of this issue, it is the homeless who suffer while the political armies fight for preeminence. In fact, has become a multibillion dollar business that is more concerned with protecting its own existence than it is in actually helping its constituents. Throwing money at the problem without a goal to solve it only perpetuates it. There are two major factions in the debate about homelessness.
To the extreme left, and most prominent in the media, is the position that says we should not blame the homeless for their condition. ...

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be easy for us to see: simply build more shelters and public housing. To the extreme right are those that say the homeless have only themselves to blame. Their position is that regardless of why people become homeless, they have the power to rise above it and rejoin society. To them, we should offer assistance only to those who deserve it, and then, only temporarily. Of course, this solution has the problem of determining who is deserving and who is not. Through skillful and clever use of the media, the homeless advocates can be credited with bringing the homeless issue into the American home. Of no small importance in their success was simply introducing the term "homeless". This word replaced such words used in the past such as hobo, tramp, bum, drunk, vagrant, pauper, indigent, panhandler, and transient and made their use politically incorrect. The objective was to promote the concept that the homeless were just like the rest of us except they didn't have a home. The ...

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they displayed what they said were the cremated remains of "John Doe"; the first homeless person to freeze to death during the previous winter (Hombs 129-31). Their theatrics used Congressional as if it were a stage, and their performance was so skillfully choreographed that the media began following them like paparazzi following Madonna leaving a cheap motel. Through the use of such tactics as fasting, illegal occupations of buildings, pray-ins, eat-ins, cage-ins, jump-ins, etc.(Rader 5), Snyder eventually won control of a huge building where he announced he would create America's largest homeless shelter. He proclaimed that, "People shouldn't have to do anything to get shelter. ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 3/28/2008 10:47:21 PM
Category: Social Issues
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 2107
Pages: 8

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