Fort Lauderdale is banning sleeping in public and panhandling on busy intersections, according to ThinkProgress.org. Prior to this, the city outlawed personal possessions in public places. The punishment for violating the ordinance is loss of possessions, $500 fine and six months in jail.
While we pilgrims agree that homelessness is obscene in such a rich country as ours and it does erode neighborhoods and businesses, but we make a bad situation worse by criminalizing this. What should the city do? Create beds and shelter people who find themselves homeless. It shouldn’t be a crime to be poor.