I'm a 21-year-old Applied Linguistics major at Georgia State University. Here's my blog: atlupclose.blogspot.com
I'm not giving up on the T-SPLOST, even though, evidently, not too many people are concerned with how wasteful APS is.
Not me, that's for sure. There's the very real problem of disease radiation once those infected are dispersed from Peachtree-Pine, but really, better now than later when the disease has had that much more time to incubate.
Seriously, though, if they even think they have a chance of resembling a legitimate charitable operation, they better damn well take those safeguards posthaste.
I know just as much about the causes of homelessness as anybody. Mental hospitals were closed, housing projects were torn down. I get it. I know that homeless people don't instantly materialize out of thin air or a whiff of destitution. I also know that they tend to congregate in run-down areas of town once they've already reached that state.
But say you're the president of a small company looking for intown office space. You're attracted to the accessibility of Downtown. However, you know that, unless the city does something to steer the throngs of homeless elsewhere, your workers, should you decide to move into, say, 55 Marietta, will be harassed and begged for change pretty much every time they walk to work. Some of your employees are downright terrified of Downtown/South Downtown for this very reason. Yes, whether or not you or I think it's prudent or justifiable, people who didn't grow up in fractured, disadvantaged neighborhoods (or "ghettos," if you will) tend to avoid places where the homeless hang out. These people work and spend money in the city, or at least have the potential to.
By the way: just because you aren't harassed by the homeless doesn't mean that people are embellishing their stories. I live across from City Hall and, yes, I am asked to buy some weed from a homeless man almost every time I walk to MARTA. One of them even followed me nearly all the way from Pryor St to the faregates just two nights ago. It's extremely aggravating at best, and a bit scary at worst. These homeless also provide a comfortable atmosphere for plain ol' drug traffickers and their customers, who park at night by the station and just hang out waiting for their salesman to come by. I see this every night from my window.
These are not inconsequential anecdotes. These are patterns of activity that prevent legal, sustainable economic development from occurring in a neighborhood.
You really shouldn't rely on calling people morons over the internet to win arguments, by the way. It doesn't look good on you.
FormerMidtowner gives a pretty good description of the area around the shelter, honestly. Besides, just because being homeless sucks doesn't mean we should let them do whatever they want in our neighborhoods, without complaining about it.
Chuckie: You say that fear and ostracism of the homeless is holding Atlanta back. I say that calling people 'morons' for pointing out the lawnessness of the area around Peachtree-Pine is, likewise, holding the city back. I'm not disgusted at the sight of the homeless, but I've been followed and harassed by them many times, sometimes right next to my visiting friends, and when it gets severe I feel like there's little to nothing I can do.
This is -not- the look of a thriving city. Normal people, with jobs and homes, don't want to deal with the obscene behavior of whom I call the "problem" homeless, and picking on them for their sometimes highly understandable fear and disgust shows that you struggle to understand how an ideal society works. I pray you never run for public office.
Now, all we need to do is examine the turnout at Bunche Middle in the 2009 runoff, and Reed is toast.
Well, it was triple the turnout from the general election, and no other polling place in town even came close to that increase. PLUS it's on the edge of the city...did he, perhaps, bus people in?
Erroll Davis thinks he can intimidate us into giving APS whatever they ask for. As if.
An interesting observation: I actually live across the street from APS headquarters, and their lights are kept on 24 hours a day, even though they pretty much all leave in the evening. How wasteful is that?? They want us to give them yet more of every purchase we make, but they won't even exercise basic financial restraint like most of us have to.
Joe: I'm tired of waiting for the Beltline, too, but keep in mind that it's not the only project on the T-SPLOST's list. MARTA is slated to receive not only badly needed money for repairs, but money for a rail line to Emory.
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