The United States Supreme Court in Washington rejected a legal appeal on December 16th that aimed to restore Boise, the Idaho laws that ban outdoor camping for homeless.
To some people, this law may hinder the ability of local governments to fight back wandering around and facilitate the printing of negative headlines in California and elsewhere almost daily. They set as an example San Francisco, which has become a city plagued by public defecation and unleashed crime.
On the other hand, website www.theepochtimes.com reported that those against it said that the 9th Circuit acted correctly by blocking the law, which allowed officials to accuse homeless of the crime of sleeping outdoors when there was no room available in the shelters.
The circuit court confirmed "the incontrovertible principle that a person can’t be charged with a crime for participating in an activity that is simply a universal and inevitable consequence of being human," said lawyers.
Like many locations throughout the United States, Boise regulates camping and sleeping in public places to ensure that these areas remain safe, accessible and safe for the continued use of residents, visitors, and wildlife, the city argued in a writing submit to the court.
Camping and sleeping restrictions are part of the “city effort to address and prevent the proliferation of dangerous camps,” which “are often a thriving ground for crime, violence and disease, and that pose serious threats to public health and safety".
Boise has a camping ordinance which makes it a misdemeanor "for anyone to use any of the streets, sidewalks, parks or public places as a place to camp at any time."
Camping is defined as “the use of public goods like a place of temporary or permanent residence, sheltering or residence, or as accommodation at any time between sunset and sunrise, or to stay”.
An ordinance of disorderly conduct prohibits “[any] one” “[occupy], stay or sleep in any building, structure or place, whether public or private… without the permission of the owner or the person entitled to possession or in control of it ”.
One of the original plaintiffs, Pamela Hawkes, told the New York Times that she was happy with the Supreme Court ruling. "I think it’s time for cities to start focusing on the issue of homeless people as a whole and not medium term," she said.
No wonder by the end of 2017, Phillip Alston, the United Nations special rapporteur for extreme poverty on a trip he took through Skid Row, Los Angeles, California, Alabama, Georgia, West Virginia, Washington DC, and Puerto Rico to observe the state of poverty in the United States concluded in its report: "the American dream is rapidly becoming the American mirage."
The 40 million poor, the increase in inequality, the persistence of poverty, the fall in life expectancy for the bulk of the population, the disappearance of a comfortable retirement for the elderly: this is the true reality of which Trump boasts when he talks about "making the U.S. big again."
Both parties in Washington (Democrats and Republicans) are rival factions of the same ruling elite, and both defend North American capitalism, which is the underlying cause of all these social evils.
At the moment the only "good" thing about the tragedy suffered by beggars of the richest country in the world and champion of inequality in developed countries today, is that at least - for now - they have the right by law to camp in the middle of the street without fear of being fined or imprisoned. What apparently they will never have, is someone responsible for solving the causes that originated their situation.