Columnist Fred Grimm portrays the homeless population of Fort Lauderdale as basically a bunch of inebriates who hang around playgrounds urinating. This isn’t true.
Certainly there are some homeless individuals with substance abuse problems, but it by no means characterizes everyone without housing. The only thing that all homeless people have in common is a lack of money.
What really concerns me is that the Fort Lauderdale Commission, and apparently Grimm, don’t understand why it’s wrong to make it illegal to feed the homeless. It isn’t illegal for someone who isn’t poor to invite friends, families or strangers to a park and share food.
Someone who isn’t poor doesn’t need to bring with them a hand-washing station or a portable toilet. This is wrong for at least two reasons. First, homeless people have been placed in a different category than all other people. They have been dehumanized and the regular rules no longer apply to them. Second, these laws are a glaring example of economic discrimination.
Laura Hansen, Fort Lauderdale