September 10 2012
The story of homelessness is one the media tends to report mostly when there is a Republican in the White House. During the Reagan years, in particular, the media used the homeless as street theater, as if these suffering men and women existed only to highlight Republican heartlessness.
The tabloids, bless 'em, don’t fall in line with the posh newspapers, and so it is the New York Daily News, not the New York Times, this morning that reports on children and teens living in homeless shelters during a time when the public is being urged to just be patient with the Obama administration's failed economic policies. Here is what homelessness looks like after four years of hope and change:
The number of children in the city’s shelters hit 19,000 last week, the most recent city data available show.
“Not since the grim days of the Great Depression has New York City had 20,000 children sleeping homeless each night,” said Patrick Markee, senior policy analyst with the Coalition for the Homeless.
Francheska’s family was waiting outside a Department of Homeless Services intake center surrounded by suitcases containing all their belongings.
“It’s really hard on my sisters; they’re young, they have no childhood, they don’t sleep well. It’s not fair to them,” Francheska said of Shanely, 7, Yadeiliz, 4, and Mileishka, 2.
“The area where we are staying now is really bad. I can’t go outside because it’s so dangerous,” Francheska said.
Francheska’s family had to leave one shelter after the city cut funding. There are several things to note about this: one is that money can’t be plucked out of thin air. No matter your intentions, you have to find the money. Even if every billionaire in the country is taxed into oblivion, the money won’t be there. Francheska’s family is simply in the vanguard of those who are being forced to see recognize this economic truth.
Users of Medicare might want to take note of what has happened to Francheska and her family: the Democrats can talk all they want to about preserving the program as is, but, if they can’t find the money, they can’t do it. Refusal to reform the Medicare system while there is still time is not the same as preserving it. Quite the contrary.
The left has always made use of the homeless. They have used them as a j'accuse for society and especially for Republicans. Sadly, Francheska and her family show the failures of the last few years and reveal that dependence on government is not a safety net after all.
Francheska is learning during her teen years what can happen if you trust government.