The one size fits all mentality is what I’ve been fighting against, particularly when it applies to the homeless community. Judging by the content of one’s character, I look at the homeless as individuals who happen to have the common need for a home.
But it seems that in some cases, when you judge particular individuals in the homeless and needy community, people circle the wagons and act as if you are attacking all of them. In one case, at a community meal in Bucks County, PA, a drunken homeless guy loudly cursed out another guest and physically threatened him. It was an unprovoked attack; T-Rex was drunk and disorderly. Yet, the Advocates for The Homeless and Those in Need (AHTN) gave him a free pass and punished the guy he attacked, as did the host. Although I was told the decision came “from the top”, I believe it was a result of an AHTN member on the scene lying about and demonizing the victim.
T-Rex finally met his Waterloo. After he ambushed the same guy at a homeless meal, someone called the police, but, aided and abetted by “friends”, he eluded police for weeks until he was arrested at the free laundry. When someone called the police about the attack, a homeless guy told the caller not to call the police. After T-Rex was arrested and in jail, as I was waiting in line at a community luncheon, a homeless guy ranted that someone calling the police to apprehend the fugitive was “terrible, terrible!”
One thing I’m sure of. The one armed man did not do it!
On another occasion, two AHTN volunteers said nothing when guests walked away with an inordinate amount of take homes when they were sitting right next to them. Although they had homes, I think they became honorary homeless people and became members of a clique. Members of their small exclusive group defended their indefensible behavior.
Two members of the clique confronted me in the parking lot last night after the community meal about calling out two individuals on my blog. One was very hostile and tried to intimidate me into not calling out particular individuals from the clique. Yet The Adams Family was held up to public scrutiny for doing the same thing. Consequently, they changed their evil ways, baby. And people in the wagon circle don’t have a problem with me calling out Birdman for his anti-social, predatory behavior.
We all need to be held to the same standards.
What people may not realize, is that by circling the wagons to protect someone in their clique reinforces the one size fits all mentality that the Bucks County establishment subscribes to. This mentality was evident at the public library in Levittown, at the Veterans’ memorial near the library, and at the Salvation Army Levittown Community Center. What’s terrible is that some individuals are not held accountable for their behavior and, consequently, everyone in the group is punished.
There’s been a campaign at the library to constructively keep the homeless out of the library. It’s not because of their behavior, but just because they are homeless. The Bucks County officer stationed at the municipal building, pressured by some of the government hacks in the WIC building, told homeless people who were just hanging out at the memorial, not breaking any rules, that some people are afraid to come to the memorial because they feel uncomfortable when the homeless people are there. Consequently, he tried to shoo them from the memorial. With my egging them on and my remarks to the officer, they did not comply and he eased off. The same rules need to apply to everyone.
The Countess of Carlisle, public relations gal at the Levittown Salvation Army, agreed with the campaign to keep the homeless out of the library, arguing that some people who visit the library don’t like them there. The Salvation Army official is so named because, like her namesake, she claims to help the disadvantaged, but doesn’t really want to know or understand them: “In 1838, Lady Carlisle articulated a negative opinion of Charles Dickens, who was then emerging as a successful author. ‘I know there are such unfortunate beings as pickpockets and streetwalkers. I am very sorry for it and am very much shocked at their mode of life, but I own I do not much wish to hear what they say to one another’, she said.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgiana_Howard,_Countess_of_Carlisle
Freedom of Speech is a wonderful right Americans have. It doesn’t just protect popular speech, but speech some people don’t like. It should not be abridged. “Sit down and shut up,” was a phrase the last resident of the White House has been known to say about people with whom he disagrees. Well, I refuse to sit down and shut up even though some people don’t approve of my calling out people whom they believe have immunity or the way I do it.
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” -John 8:32