FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
NYPD utilizing #OWS for indigent relief efforts?
(Via Jammie Wearing Fool) Which is a polite way of saying “New York cops allegedly loading Zuccotti Park up with real homeless.”
…while officers may be in a no-win situation, at the mercy of orders carried on shifting political winds and locked into conflict with a so-far almost entirely non-violent protest movement eager to frame the force as a symbol of the oppressive system they’re fighting, the NYPD seems to have crossed a line in recent days, as the park has taken on a darker tone with unsteady and unstable types suddenly seeming to emerge from the woodwork. Two different drunks I spoke with last week told me they’d been encouraged to “take it to Zuccotti” by officers who’d found them drinking in other parks, and members of the community affairs working group related several similar stories they’d heard while talking with intoxicated or aggressive new arrivals.
Read, as they say, the whole thing. And after you do, we’ll discuss.First off, let me surprise some folks: if the cops are doing the above, they shouldn’t be, and they need to stop. Homeless people are still people, and our societal methods of dealing with them are already sufficiently messed up that we don’t need a situation where they’re being weaponized, aimed, and fired off as part of a civic political battle. I’m also not grooving on the idea of deliberately putting homeless people – a demographic that is notoriously prone to drug use and psychological dysfunction (and let’s not make bad jokes about this, OK?) – into close contact with a bunch of people who do not actually have a clue about how to handle either. I despise the Activist Left as much as anyone, but I don’t want to see any of them actually stabbed unless they’re out there wielding a weapon*.
So far, so bleeding-heart of me. Fine, I’ll take that hit. However: the last major reason why this policy offends me is because it’s what my father called ‘sneak behavior’ (actually, he called it something slightly differently than that, but the original is too scatological to repeat). If – as the NY Daily News suggests – the NYPD really is pumping homeless in Zuccotti Park because the Bloomberg administration doesn’t want to confront the Occupiers, then the Bloomberg administration needs to resign en masse, from the Mayor on down. The Bloomberg administration is being cowardly for not dealing with the Occupiers for what they are: a collection of illegal squatters engaged in multiple violations of local housing, zoning, public health, and public safety codes. It’s long past time that they stop engaging in those violations – and it’s even longer past the time that these people have it made clear to them that there’s a reason why the first words of the First Amendment that the Occupiers pretend to worship is Congress shall make no law.
What’s that? Zuccotti Park is private property? Fine. Does Brookfield Office Properties have the necessary permissions and OKs to permit Occupy Wall Street’s activities? – That’s a rhetorical question: no, Brookfield does not. So if the owner of record is uninterested in bringing its property back in compliance with code, then the city needs to intervene. That means:
- Go in.
- Remove every person from the park, and prevent them from re-entry.
- Throw everything in the park that doesn’t belong to Brookfield into a dumpster.
- Scrub down the place.
- Enforce existing city code in the future.
- Arrest everybody who tries to stop the police from doing the first five items on this list. Let them enjoy a tour of the NYC court system, starting with a night at Riker’s Island.
- AND NO EXCEPTIONS.
That’s what Rudy Giuliani would have done. Although I doubt he would have let things get this far.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: No, I don’t expect that Michael Bloomberg will do any of this. He’s always been a child’s model, a slave’s flattery, of Rudy.
*But when one of them so much as picks up a rock, then that rule changes.