Shelter's not the only problem facing the poor
On "Homeless Shelters Already Crunched," regarding the increase in people seeking help from local homeless shelters: There's a further situation with how government deals with poor people in general.
The powers that be are perfectly content to have people, on a continued basis, get their food from the churches – whether it's groceries or meals. Let's talk about the SNAP program, for instance. The piddling amount is less than $150 a month for food for a single, able-bodied person without dependents.
The way the program is run is designed to engender self-sufficiency, in and of itself a laudable goal. However, the way they do it is to have a set of extremely unrealistic job contacts and interviews on a daily basis. And if, for whatever reason, you fall short of those unrealistic metrics, you can be sanctioned for two- and four-month periods, which means no food for you.
There are also a great deal of middle-aged men needing help, because discrimination against people in their 50's is rife in this community. Employers in this region have a holier-than-thou judgment of people who have periods of unemployment because of this type of discrimination. This mindset perpetuates poverty and other social ills we are all too familiar with.
The problems at College Town
City's article on College Town was very timely, as many people had surely wondered about its status. Quotes from the director of marketing and events were interesting, but lacked insight into the effects of so little planning for other than foot traffic.
Parking is a puzzle for many, and paying for it may send people elsewhere. The area is simply not very inviting, even to those who have wanted to explore it. At this point, it needs help to assure survival.
The Democrats choose a sheriff
On our election coverage and the Democrats' success in the race for sheriff: As a loyal local Democrat who works full time and has a family, I depend on the local party leadership to properly research and recruit the candidates they put forward for our support. It would be nice if we all had the time and resources to do it ourselves, but we don't. We rely on party leaders to keep our best interests and shared values in mind when they ask us to commit our time and money to a candidate.
I am hurt to have learned that was not the case with MCDC's candidate for sheriff. To ask us to support and vote for a candidate who shares no values with common Democrats was a breach of trust.
Democrats are clearly a diverse lot of human beings, who agree and disagree with each other on the whole gamut of issues facing our community, our nation, and the world. The quest to find only "true Democrats" to run for office is a key factor for many of our recent defeats.
Our efforts should be expansive, both within our current ranks to heal our broken trust, and outward to bring others into the party. Bravo to all Democrats who are making that happen.