Wednesday, March 20, 2019
On to a better life
DH talked to one of our friends from drugville, last night. He and his wife lived in the next neighborhood over and that is how we met them - trying to fight the drug problem. Though they lasted longer with dealing with it than we did, they finally got worn out and have given up, too. They just put their house up for sale and accepted an offer yesterday for a bit more than their asking price. Soon they will be more than halfway across the county, looking for a place with some acreage for their horses and some much needed peace and quiet. His wife has a really good job (he is on disability) that she is going to be able to keep and work remotely, like I do. So happy for them.
Same friend had sent us this link to watch. https://komonews.com/news/local/komo-news-special-seattle-is-dying
It's an hour long, but worth the watch. It is the first ever report I have seen showing the truth of it all. This is exactly what we were dealing with - even in the smaller suburb town in the county we lived in. So much of what was reported is what DH learned, years ago. He would go through the county sheriff jail roster. Repeated name after name arrested, released, repeat over and over. In our suburb area he had figured out that there were about 30 or so that were arrested time and time again causing most of the drug dealing and theft problems. The deputies arrest and the next day they are out. The comment "we aren't going to arrest our way out of this". DH and I both snorted at the same time. If we had a dollar for every time we heard that from the head sheriff, the prosecutors, etc...
I continue to follow a Facebook page from our old town - the group running the page documents all the homeless camps, arrests, etc in the town of about 40,000. It's just getting worse and worse. The police blotter shows the 2 grocery stores in town are daily dealing with issues (people being accosted in the parking lots) and shoplifting. Same with the Walmart. The parks and trails in town are taken over now. They have had this Facebook page going for a few years. It has inspired one of the contributors (a local business owner) to now run for city council, whereas before he never had any interest in becoming a politician. Last year another trying to fight it ran in his district and won. But, until they vote those allowing it to happen out of that city council, it's just going to get worse. The city police dept's hands are tied, just as is the county sheriff deputies. They are told not to enforce the laws of no loitering, no camping, etc. There was tent encampment on some railroad property. Finally, last week, with enough citizen complaining (and the police doing nothing) the RR took it into their own hands and literally covered the ground in big rocks, rather than a nice grassy area. They just moved their tents across the street. Still breaking the law and still nothing done to them. The town is now basically being "run" by an attorney who profits from a homeless resource center. Anytime the city gov't tries to do anything they get sued by him or other organizations he has under his belt.
That documentary could be the title for just about any city around there, at this point. The politicians want to call it a homeless problem. It is not. It is an addiction problem that then creates a homeless problem. It is an enabling problem because none of these people are held responsible for their actions and choices. It is why the company I work for moved to a safer location. It is most likely why, a year later, that nice office space is still vacant. Who wants to put their business where homeless live in rv's all along the street the building is on? While the city police say there is nothing they can do about it.
The small (pop. 20,000) suburb town my dd lives in is trying a completely opposite approach (literally, the only town in that area that I think is doing this) And guess what?! It's working. The addicts are offered help. Told to either accept it and get off the streets or they will put them in jail for breaking the law. They have enforced the no loitering and no camping laws. For DD's sake, I hope their town continues to stay tough. The answer isn't just taxing the hardworking people more and throwing more money at letting them keep doing it. Taxpayer dollars already funded the laws that are in place and taxpayer dollars already fund the departments to enforce those laws. She actually went to college with and was friends with a young man who is on her county council. So refreshing to see a young conservative and that he won, at his young age.
I am so glad to be away from there and all the failed policies that just keep becoming the norm. We have another couple we are friends with (though they didn't live in our neighborhood, are still living in all that crap) who are in the process of leaving, too. A couple months ago they went and scouted out the area in the state they want to move to. I see on Facebook they are selling off excess stuff, so they don't have to move it. I'm sure they are just waiting for school to get out for the year, as they have 2 young kids. I look forward to seeing them share (on Facebook and phone calls) their new life, back to how living and raising a family should be.