Over the weekend, Chronicle readers were treated to this column by CW Obvious on a really horrible stabbing that happened in the Outer Sunset. Thank God the poor woman (an exchange student from Germany) survived and isn’t dead, but I can only imagine the pain (mental and physical) such an attack would cause. On behalf of the good people of San Francisco, we all want to say “we’re sorry” our City sucked so much you got attacked.
As you might imagine, CW’s safari into the strange and mysterious wilds of the Outer Sunset set off blogging mayhem, SF Style, with all sorts of accusations and recriminations, not to mention a torrent of angry comments on SFGate. Feel the love, people.
For me, however, I found the whole situation to be Yet Another Example of how local media might better serve their dwindling readership if they took some classes at the No Duh Institute.
It’s no secret that whenever the 5-0 roust the perpetually ill or perpetually addicted from one spot, they go elsewhere, preferably somewhere with some spare change, but without a lot of police or citizen hassle. Too often, that’s meant the outer neighborhoods, and we’ve seen what happens when we get to critical mass. Neither the “homeless” or the citizens win in the end.
Sure, CW and the Chronicle may feel great when they take pictures of “the rabble” being rousted out of a portion of Golden Gate Park – but they don’t seem to be aware that the warm, squishy feelings don’t change anything – “the rabble” simply pick up sticks and move elsewhere, often using our MUNI.
Now, you would think in a city with as many allegedly intelligent people as ours, folks could turn down the irrational emotions and sensational articles for a few minutes, think about the many issues involved, listen to each other and those involved in said issues, and come to a reasonable solution.
I don’t know that the “homeless,” drug addicts, or the mentally ill are served particularly well by having them living around the streets, hurting themselves and others, and not being on the medication that can literally save their lives. On the other hand, I’ve seen enough demands for detention camps (and worse) for folks guilty of the crime of Not Having Money or Having a F*cked Mental Illness to make me wonder just how “enlightened” San Francisco really is.
Instead, as with MUNI, people are content to scream and yell from their respective ideological corners, the louder the better, and to Hell with the Other Side. Too bad that in this case, as with MUNI, the reasonable people of San Francisco are caught in the middle – and end up the ones who lose the most.
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I could not agree with you more.
I also found the C.W. Nevius column grotesque in that it caused a lot of people a lot of suffering and pain, and didn’t make a damned thing better for anyone. As for newcomers getting stabbed by a crazy person, I knew a young man who had just moved here from Iowa in the early 1980s who went to the Midnight Sun video bar in the Castro one evening, where a stranger proceeded to stab him in the back with a knife. He never did find out who did it or why and moved back to Iowa soon after. Be careful out there, people.
But demonizing the poor and crazy like Nevius has been doing is just creepy.