The Homeless and Kafka’s Cockroach

In my psychology in literature class in college, a classmate said that the moral of Franz Kafka’s Metamorphosis is that Gregory, the character in the parable, woke up as a cockroach because he didn’t want to face the world. He didn’t want to face responsibility so he lingered in bed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Metamorphosis

I’ve found the homeless problem in Bucks County, PA, which I’ve been associated with for about two years to be Kafkaesque. For those of you in Doylestown, “Kafkaesque” is defined by Merriam-Webster :  “of, relating to, or suggestive of Franz Kafka or his writings; especially: having a nightmarishly complex, bizarre, or illogical quality <Kafkaesque bureaucratic delays>”. When now Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas was fighting his hi tech lynching, he remarked that the whole ordeal was Kafkaesque.

I also find much of modern psychology to be Kafkaesque.

I just read a very long article: Psychology and The Church. If you are an egghead, and have a free day, you may want to read it: http://inplainsite.org/html/psychology_and_the_church.html

One point I recall from the reading is that the church can relate on a more personal level than typical secular psychology as well as have absolutes, truth which works best to keep people truly in the pink, although this doesn’t happen in a wink. Churches serve God and man well when they share one another’s burdens. Psychology has found that someone experiencing problems knowing that people really care is a big factor in helping them resolve their problems. (Not all psychology is bad).

At the community meal for the homeless and those in need on Sunday, hosts from the church sat down with some of the guests and discussed their concerns. They helped them a lot more than a shrink, including ones from Penndel Mental Health Center. During the time I broke bread with the homeless at community meals and at other venues, I’ve noticed that those who have gone to the secular center didn’t seem to improve over time. In fact, they got worse. Conversely, broken people who followed the Lord appeared to have improved their attitude, reflected in their demeanor. I’ve tried both and found this to be the case.

Modern psychology is reflected in the thinking of some in the Bucks County establishment. Some time ago, I ran the idea by a Bucks County Commissioner to designate county land as an official homeless encampment. The homeless would build and manage the place. There would be rules and leadership. The commissioner responded that this would jeopardize the chances of the homeless to get county assisted housing, which takes between one and two years to get. The commissioner’s answer was Kafkaesque!

She also pushed funding for mental health.

Like Gregory in Kafka’s novella, Bucks County doesn’t want to honestly face the world of the homeless.

Bucks County aggressively canvases to secure taxpayer funds by shanghaiing the homeless and signing them up for mental health services.  The mental health hustlers are everywhere, trying to recruit the homeless like the people in Bob Dylan’s comical song where everybody’s trying to “stone you”. And in essence, with the center’s “medications”, they are stoning you:

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=bob+dylan+everybody+must+get+stoned+youtube&view=detail&mid=0FABCAAA13311BEF362B0FABCAAA13311BEF362B&FORM=VIRE

Throughout the history of the church, there has been a battle between the church and the world. This is evident in Bucks County over the well being of hurting people. I’m on the side of the church.

“And concerning you, my brethren, I myself also am convinced that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able also to admonish one another.” -Romans 15:14

Clowns to The Left of Me

They have been out. At homeless meals in Bucks County, PA, at SEPTA’s Jefferson Station —everywhere– to register people to vote. There was a report recently from Philadelphia about the homeless voting. Advocates and politicians are making sure the homeless vote.  http://www.fox29.com/news/211016034-story

In a recent report from a Philadelphia news station, a homeless person, I believe a druggie, expressed that he has a problem with Donald Trump. Like most anti Trumpets, he gave no reason why he doesn’t like The Donald. From the anti Trump camp, we mostly hear the usual clichés.

In the news story, a homeless veteran said that because of poor care, while waiting for services, veterans have died. The Veterans Health Administration comes under the executive branch of government.

In Dover, Delaware, there is a conflict between a church that has been allowing homeless people to stay on its property, and neighbors. “It has really nothing to do with being anti-homeless,” said Thomas Farrington, who lives near the church. Neighbors complained that the police often have to break up fights between homeless people and that the music and yelling gets loud. http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/Delaware-Dover-Church-Tiny-House-Neighbors-Controversy–392662151.html

Farrington said that he isn’t being anti-homeless, yet states “We are not talking about a mother and a couple of children who she lost her job. We’re talking about people that are chronically homeless. They can walk, they can talk, and they can carry a collection plate. But they can’t get a job?”

Although this neighbor may have a legitimate beef about the noise and fights coming from the homeless, he doesn’t understand the homeless. Just because someone is able to work doesn’t mean he/she can find a job. There is a lot of unemployment in our Obama Nation. If elected, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton will continue BO’s stinky policies, such as the war on coal, which will put people out of work and exacerbate homelessness.

I personally don’t know the homeless or the situation in Dover like I do in lower Bucks County, PA. What I do know is that there are homeless people here who work, but haven’t worked long enough or make enough money to get a place. I also know that, even if you have a little money, it’s tough to find a place in Bucks County.

In some cases, homeless people here in Bucks County create their own problems. In Queen Anne Park, in the woods on county land, there were complaints about druggies living in the woods. At least one of them in those woods had to be taken to the emergency room.  There are other examples which I’ve written about on previous blogs.

In the case of the Dover church, if indeed the fighting and noise from the homeless is really happening, the pastor needs to make and enforce rules for the homeless who stay at the church property. Individuals who don’t follow the rules should be thrown out so they don’t ruin the privilege for everybody else, which is sometimes the case in Bucks County.

In Bucks County, concerned people have been taking measures to hold unruly individuals accountable for their behavior, particularly at the community meals for the homeless and those in need. This is only fair so the rest of the homeless don’t get a bad name and suffer. As is the title of a song by Eric Burdon And The Animals, “One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show”.  https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=one+monkey+won%27t+stop+the+show+eric+burdon+and+the+animals&qpvt=one+monkey+won%27t+stop+the+show+eric+burdon+and+the+animals&FORM=VDRE

Just because a few A-holes in the homeless community act up, responsible, decent people in the homeless community should not be marginalized and should be given an opportunity for housing.

Awhile back, when I proposed a plan to Democrat Bucks County Commissioner Diane Marseglia to set aside county land for an official homeless community, she responded that this would jeopardize opportunities for the homeless to get county assisted housing. The public assisted housing takes one to two years. But of course, what does reality matter to someone living in an Ivory Tower?

Marseglia also championed mental health help for the homeless. This sediment has been put into action by the Bucks County Mental Health hustlers, who go here there and everywhere in an attempt to Shanghai the homeless and take their taxpayer funds to keep the county mental health industry in business. Alan Johnson, formerly with Penndel Mental Health Center, but still a county hustler, told me that he doesn’t believe in housing first. Instead, he said people need to get straightened out before they get housing. This presupposes that all homeless have such serious issues that they are not fit to move in anywhere until they avail themselves of the county mental health services. As comedian Pat Paulsen used to say, “BULL FEATHERS!”

Sensible people, including the more industrious members of the homeless community, know that Hillary Clinton or other Democrat, such as PA Representative Tina Davis, the Bimbo of Bucks County who says she has done a great deal for the homeless and will continue to do so, in reality does very little for them other than helping with tasks such as benefits.

Democrats get in the way. PA Governor “Big Bad” Tom Wolf banned drilling for resources on state lands. The Bimbo of Bucks County praised the wolf for saving the day, saving the environment. She admitted that current drilling on state lands fosters a good economy but said that protecting the environment trumps this. Maybe the bimbo and the wolf can pass out pink slips and eviction notices on Halloween.

Hillary Clinton, and the other Democrats, who are clones of one another, sit high above us on their Ivory Towers. Like the Democrats in Bucks County, they don’t care about serving the homeless or other regular people or even accommodate private efforts to help them (efforts to use abandoned buildings and land in Bucks County for the homeless are stonewalled). They mostly just know how to Demagogue and serve themselves and the special interests. They do, however, sometimes throw in facts, such as the ads that attack Pat Toomey for abridging the right for a woman to murder a baby. These ads prompt me not to vote for Pat’s opponent!

“Your wisdom has certainly made you rich… but your wealth has led to arrogance! You compared yourself to a god, so now I, the LORD God, will make you the victim of cruel enemies” – Ezekiel 28:4-7.

What is an Advocate? What is “is”?

Words mean something.  Although the Advocates for The Homeless and Those in Need (AHTN) in Bucks County, PA  transports the homeless to meals and helps them with various services, they are not advocates.

Merriam-Webster defines “advocate”:

  • A person who argues for or supports a cause or policy
  • A person who works for a cause or group
  • A person who argues for the cause of another person in a court of law

Back in April, when Bucks County conducted a search and destroy mission to completely evict the homeless from the whole government center complex and surrounding woods in Levittown, there was a chance meeting between veterans, homeless residents, and volunteers at the Veterans Memorial in the complex. http://levittownnow.com/2016/04/30/county-officials-begin-to-clear-homeless-camps/

The only ones who spoke up for the homeless were the homeless themselves, volunteers, and Morris Derry, President of No More Pain Inc. AHTN had nothing to say during the homeless evictions there, or anywhere. Awhile ago, I asked the president of AHTN to help a friend and I with our quest to provide more shelter for the homeless, but she blew it off, saying that 24/7 security would be needed.

Getting past the demagoguery of the homeless, one of the veterans suggested finding a building to help those without permanent homes.  There is a lack of shelter for the homeless; there’s nowhere to go, nowhere to hide, baby!

Speaking as an advocate for the homeless, Morris said “I understand what their (the county) concerns are, but I really don’t think their dealing with it the right way.” A notice was posted for the homeless to vacate the area with an alleged solution to the homeless housing problem, a phone number promising, like the promise to the Okies in John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath of a better life in California, for housing assistance.

“I called the phone number on the signs and there is no more room in the shelters,” Morris said.

Leaders in the homeless community, have been exploring options for shelter, as has been individual homeless people, who have limited resources.

With all its resources, Bucks County wastes its efforts by striving to get the homeless out of site, out of mind, instead of working on adequate solutions.

One solution, perhaps the final one, is to get the homeless off the streets by signing them up with taxpayer funded Bucks County mental health services. Like manure, Bucks County nuthouse representatives are all over the place, at code blues, tent city evictions, the library… As the Sword of Damocles was hanging over the heads of the homeless before the memorial eviction, predators from the Bucks County health industry flocked to the memorial, clipboards in hand and badges hung around their necks, trying to shanghai the homeless into their programs by baiting them with housing opportunities.

In concert with Bucks County’s view of the homeless, the mental health hustlers scheme to put them into a program, where the homeless become wards of they state, where they not only don’t get better – they get worse. They don’t strive to give the homeless a hand up so they can be productive members of society, but just want to sedate them with drugs and psychobabble. They have written the homeless off.

One ploy these charlatans use is to con homeless people to go on social security disability by saying they are mentally disabled. Bucks County official Alan Johnson, who has made frequent appearances wherever he can find his homeless prey, offered me housing in exchange for me submitting to being labeled as being so mentally messed up that I could never work.

In contrast to the Bucks County establishment’s view of the homeless, local churches have been accepting the homeless unconditionally, as created in the image of God. The status as being homeless does not define them.

Instead, like Evangelist in John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, they point the homeless to Jesus, who is the ultimate advocate for everyone.

“My little children, these things write I unto you, that you sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:” -1st John 2:1.

Here on earth, the homeless need an advocate. This is where Christians come in. They need to advocate for the homeless. Instead of sucking up to the Bucks County establishment, like some officials from the  Salvation Army Levittown Community center do, for example The Countess of Carlisle who thinks it’s OK to rid the library of the homeless just because people don’t like them, Christians need to stand up for the homeless.

“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.” –2nd Corinthians 5:20.

Down But Not Out

Rick Proudfoot was an electrician. Because of the economy, he couldn’t find work and became homeless. He ended up sleeping in city parks; the penalty for which is $300 or 30 days in jail.

But this was only for a season. Somehow he found his way to Dignity Village, an official homeless community in Portland, Oregon. For two years now, he’s been CEO of the self-funded, self managed, and self governed community.

Lisa Larson was on the street for two years, camping on sidewalks and sleeping in abandoned buildings. While serving time in jail with her husband for chronically violating the ban against homeless camping in Milwaukie, Oregon, another homeless person told her about Dignity Village. Today she’s the village’s chief executive officer and the official spokesperson for Dignity Village.

Unlike Curly of The Three Stooges, you don’t have to be a victim of circumstances. You can get out of that place, if it’s the last thing you ever do and make a better life.

The moral of the story is not to write off people who are down and out. Homeless people have the potential to improve their lot.

People in Bucks County, PA should learn a lesson from these success stories. Here in Bucks, the homeless are often written off a never-do-wells, and the establishment just wants to keep them down. The conventional wisdom is that the average homeless person is a mental case, druggie or drunk. People who frequent the library want them removed without cause. On one occasion a county official said that people were not comfortable visiting the nearby Veterans Memorial when the homeless are there.

There certainly are some mental cases in the group. I’ve gathered that at least two of them who attend the community meals are complete nutcases. And there are a few drunks and druggies. The druggies are generally refugees from the local recovery houses that the feds have pushed on the community in lower Bucks County. There are about 100 of them just in Levittown, PA. The biggest thing the homeless are hooked on is tobacco.

The homeless in Bucks County are fair game for the mental health industry, whose hustlers aggressively canvas the homeless community to sign them up for their services and use taxpayer funds. When I was on a quest for housing, Alan Johnson, now with Bucks County Family Services, said he’d find housing for me if I was willing to write myself off as being so messed up mentally I could not work the rest of my life. He’s made that offer to others.

Alan once told me that he doesn’t subscribe to housing first. He said that people have to get straight before they move into a residence. This presupposes that all homeless people are dysfunctional. I vehemently disagree!

Many of the homeless in lower Bucks County work, some sporadically, some somewhat regularly. One guy, for example, one of the “library people” is a professional homeless person. He quit jobs because he doesn’t want to work but just wants handouts and to play video games in the library all day. Many of the homeless, however, are serious about working. At one of the community meals I overheard a conversation between two homeless guys who have been working sporadically. They agreed that they want to get into a work routine.

Some homeless people have gotten good jobs and are living like everyone else.

If they are willing, homeless people can change their circumstances, given the opportunity. Even those who abuse drugs and alcohol can change. It’s good that churches in the area are reaching out to the homeless and not just helping them with physical needs; they help them with their problems. At one community meal, one of the hosts ministered to a guy with a drug problem, one on one. Sometime after that, I saw him at a temporary treatment center. He realized the seriousness of the problem and told me he is determined to persevere with treatment. I believe he moved on to a longer term treatment center.

Another guy recently returned to the community and got clean. At one of the community meals a host announced that he was going to give his testimony.

Ultimately, it’s God who can deliver people, no matter what the problem, if you let Him.

“The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust in Him.”

–Nahum 1:7