Comment

Op-Ed: Measure S is a step backwards for Berkeley

Photo: Nancy Rubin

In an Opinionator piece published today Elisa Della-Piana argues that Measure S, which, if passed, would prohibit sitting on sidewalks in commercial areas between 7am and 10pm, would establish the simple act of sitting as a crime in our community. It won’t improve business, solve homelessness or make us safer, she says. It’s an approach that doesn’t fit well with Berkeley, she adds —  and, perhaps most importantly of all, it’s not a law she will find easy to explain to her five-year old son.

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  • guest

    If Alameda county would take its’ responsibility seriously it would instate “Laura’s Law” which would assist the mentally ill homeless plus save some lives.  Of course the same group that loves the folks that lie on the streets and think it is quaint, would argue that “Laura’s Law” inhibits the freedom of these mentally sick folks by forcing them to get treatment.  

  • guest

    What is your answer?  Oh, you don’t have one.  What a pity.  Mitch we have to start somewhere and I have rarely seen a police person confront a homeless person in a mean manner unless they are unruly and causing problems and even then I have seen them being very gentle.  It is possible that one or two may not be gentle, but, most of them are and I have seem many encounters.

  • guest

    The citizens of Berkeley are being injured.  Emotionally and otherwise.  The homeless are being injured because we have zero expectations of them.  Most of the homeless are mentally ill or addicted to alcohol or drugs and they need help.  Not Liberty as you say because being addicted or mentally ill gives you no future or hope.  Further, the ones that choose the “lifestyle” injures the rest that have to work for a living and pay taxes to keep these “Stylists” fed and safe.  There is no equality here when the chronically homeless, sick or otherwise, take over these areas and keep the rest of the members of our society from equal enjoyment.

  • guest

    Perhaps you would like to describe the above decisions.  But I will argue further that these groups of homeless that choose to take over the sidewalks, impair my ability to move around and my liberty to enjoy my freedom of movement.  Don’t I get to be protected by the 14th.?

  • guest

    Again, this is not San Francisco and the measure being proposed is not the same as the one in SF.  Have you read the ballot measure or are you just drinking from the Kool Aid.

  • Anonymous

     And Walnut Creek would be flooded. Wait a minute….

  • Anonymous

     Well, I have no idea who Tzedek is but I don’t doubt his story at all since I’ve similar experiences with my kids both on that part of Shattuck and Telegraph. I no longer take my kids downtown or to Telegraph either.

  • Tzedek

     Anotheranon, I have not written about what happened to our girls before.   It seems you have us confused with someone else.

  • Charles_Siegel

     I think it is probably “her story” rather than “his story,” since Tzedek talks about her husband.

    I always assumed Tzedek was a man, because it is a masculine noun in Hebrew (meaning justice).  She could use the feminine noun Ts’dakah (meaning righteousness or charity) instead.

  • Tzedek

    Charles, from Deuteronomy 16:20 – translated “Justice, and only justice, you shall follow  … ”   or “Strive for nothing but justice … ” where justice is not masculine or feminine   – - -   but you are right, justice that includes charity is best.  

    Simple fairness requires that “service resistant” addicts and “lost souls” not harass /  intimidate / assault / batter others.  If what they want is money, drugs, or just to harass and terrify passersby for the “thrill” of it, business districts of Berkeley provide a “target rich” environment.   These “service resistant” people are making a specific choice to be where they can get what they want.

    If Measure S can create a situation where “service resistant” people can be pushed into recovery, all the better.

  • Charles_Siegel

    :Tzedek, tzedek tirdof” (Deut 16:20) was the first thing I thought of when I saw your name.