Homeless in San Francisco

“People are showing up in San Francisco from other places and asking where their hotel room is,” Mayor Breed complained.

“People are coming from all over the place, Sacramento, Lake County, Bakersfield,” Jeanine Nicholson, the first lesbian head of the San Francisco Fire Department, grumbled. “People are getting released from jail in other counties and being told to go to San Francisco, where you will get a tent and then you will get housing.”

The people coming to the City by the Bay weren’t wearing flowers in their hair, they were homeless junkies who had heard that they were going to get free hotel rooms, along with pot and booze.

And it was all true. Every word of it.

San Francisco was spending $200 a night to house the homeless, or as the current politically correct euphemism insisted that they be called, the ‘unhoused’, in hotel rooms at a cost of over $100 million.

The hotel rooms were Plan B after an attempt to house the homeless (or the unhoused) in the Palace of Fine Arts.

The degradation of the former imitation Roman bath built for the 1915 Exposition would have been a fitting symbol for the new San Francisco, but homeless advocates thought it wasn’t good enough.

Hotels weren’t exactly enthusiastic about having paranoid schizophrenics urinating in their lobbies. Also, under San Francisco law, staying there for 30 days might give the homeless tenancy rights.

And then good luck evicting them.

Meanwhile the homeless were willing to take the hotel rooms, but they weren’t following the rules.

The whole reason that San Francisco taxpayers were going to be out $200 a night for months was to save each crazed homeless junkie from spreading the coronavirus.

But how do you do that when they won’t stop punching each other from less than 6 feet away, and won’t wash their hands before shooting up?

“It’s been very challenging to get even some of the residents who are part of the shelter system and our hotels to comply with the orders, to even wear masks,” Mayor London Breed complained.

“It’s been so much harder to really care for this population especially when they won’t comply with simple directions or the orders we’re implementing.”

She described it as an, “incredible logistical challenge.”

The problem with homeless shelters has always been getting the homeless to stay in them. No matter how comfortable the facilities might be, the inhabitants go off searching for drugs and alcohol which they’re not allowed to have in the shelters, and there goes your whole shelter in place strategy.

But San Francisco is a uniquely creative place and the Health Department decided to convince the homeless to stay in their hotel rooms by delivering booze, pot, and cigarettes as part of room service.

Along with three meals a day.

In San Francisco, you can’t smoke in restaurants or bars (back when they were open), in public parks (when you could visit them), or near open doorways (back when people still left them open), and smoking in hotels was almost impossible, but now San Francisco has thousands of smoking hotel rooms.

All it took was a pandemic and a bunch of characters from a Tom Wolfe novel running the city.

And, best of all, the same Health Department waging a campaign against smoking is providing the tobacco, along with “medical cannabis”, and “medically appropriate amounts of alcohol”.

Don’t worry folks, it’s all medicinal.

The San Francisco Health Department claims that handing out drugs and booze to junkies with coronavirus is actually a “harm reduction practice” that has “significant individual and public health benefits”.

That’s a hell of a public health benefit.

Next time someone tries to stop you from lighting up in San Fran, tell them that the Health Department said that it has “significant individual and public health benefits”.

“Our behavioral health experts are offering services every day, medication assisted treatment including nicotine and opiate replacement, behavioral health counseling,” Dr. Grant Colfax, Obama’s former National AIDS Policy Director, gushed, “and in cases where people decide that they are going to continue to use, our focus is using the best evidence to help people manage their addictions.” 

Hey, if they’re going to get high, let’s help them “manage their addictions” by giving them the stuff.

Inexplicably, if you open up hotels for junkies and provide them with the stuff, they will come. They’ll come from Sacramento, Lake County, Bakersfield, Stockton, and anyplace that isn’t nice enough to offer drug and alcohol hotel rooms free of charge to anyone with open sores and delusions of grandeur.

“It is a mystery why the homeless are coming to San Francisco,” the San Francisco Chronicle wondered.

What’s a mystery is how anyone associated with the paper figures out how to put their pants on, but this correspondent might speculate that it has something to do with the free hotel rooms and booze.

Homeless “structures” have increased 285% and San Francisco can’t figure out where to stick them. And the first lesbian head of the San Francisco Fire Department is stuck with the problem because in that wonderous utopia, the job of the fire department isn’t just putting out fires, but dealing with vagrants.

“Our folks are embedded in their communities and they know who is on the streets,” she said.

The homeless immigrating to San Francisco from less friendly parts of California are even dialing 911 to get a hotel room.

“These people are very honest when you talk with them,” a paramedic quoted by the San Francisco Chronicle said, “They come right out and ask, ‘How do I get a hotel room?’”

Then they start coughing and demand to be taken to their hotel suite.

Mayor Breed has tried telling foreign homeless vagrants to go home and leave San Francisco alone. But how do you keep them down in Stockton once they’ve seen the free hotel rooms and booze in SF?

“The reality is we’ve got to focus our limited resources on reaching the people who have been here on our streets for a long time,” she insisted.

First squat, first served.

The interim director of the homelessness department (presumably soon to be changed to the unhoused department or the ministry of poop walks) warned that free hotels rooms and pot will only be dispensed to those homeless who “have roots in San Francisco.” The new arrivals will have to wait their turn.

You can’t just show up in San Francisco and demand free booze and a hotel room. They’re not suckers.

If you aren’t descended from the first hippies who came here with the first communes, go home. The free booze and hotel rooms are reserved for those with roots in the crackhead community.

But homeless advocates rightly argue that this sort of NIMBY attitude is cruel and selfish. Why shouldn’t the homeless of the coast, the country, the continent, and the planet all show up in San Francisco?

What’s with this homeless nativism that puts San Fran citizenship ahead of need?

Sadly, San Francisco responded parochially to the influx of homeless by sending police officers out to intimidate the new homeless and prevent them from displacing the old homeless. Sometimes you have to destroy the new makeshift homeless encampment to save the old homeless encampment.

And then, soon, you’re beating the undocumented and unhoused with nightsticks for social justice.

Mayor Breed might as well just start building a wall to keep the Stockton homeless out while vowing to Make Homelessness Great Again by giving away pot and booze only to the city’s own homeless.

Reproduced with kind permission of Frontpage Mag