NextDoor: Homeless make city look ‘like a Third World country’

Concerns about the homeless and neighborhood crime were by far the most common posts in in the last month. Other writers had nice things to say about Good Samaritans in Curtis Park and the new newspaper carrier. And, one newcomer wanted to know where six adults could go for Thanksgiving dinner.


Comments about homeless encampments in the W/X Streets corridor described the situation as “a mess,” “nasty,” and “like a Third World country in deepening poverty” with “piles of trash on the sidewalk – guess I’ve never seen it that bad before.” “When I was in elementary school, we watched a film on India and they had all these people that were homeless living in the street. And I thought, ‘How horrible!’ And when I said that to the teacher, she said, ‘Don’t worry, it could never happen in America. Our system of government would never allow this.’”

– Amy Tay of Hollywood Park

“My heart goes out to the people displaced and struggling, but what can be done? Today is the third time I’ve found a junkie passed out on my property in a two-year span. Shirtless, shoeless and completely strung out. I have two small children and our idea of safety has been constantly eroding and we’re now looking for new neighborhoods to live in.”

– Stuart Steene-Connolly of Newton Booth neighborhood

“If they are mentally ill, we need to create housing for them that will help treat their mental health. If it’s a temporary displacement, there are shelters and resources available. Unemployment is at its all-time low in the country, around 3.7%. If it’s drug addiction, how is this safe for our children? We are too lax and lenient.”

– Zena Hashim

“There is so much talk about facility sites to help address this issue but let it be proposed in the (fill in the blank) neighborhood and out come the NIMBYs.
Truth is, we want this to be a policing and enforcement issue. At some point the citizenry must agree to mental health and residential facilities that can help manage this.
Nothing will eradicate it. It can only be addressed and managed.”

– Lue Bishop of Land Park

“Treat them medically and psychically. Allow them to live in humane conditions. Restore their pride! Only then do they have a chance to once again become contributors to the greater whole.”

– Chris Walker

Brazen robber

Michelle Yost wrote Sept. 10 that her son, who lives behind Gunther’s Ice Cream Parlor, “heard a noise in his backyard. He opened the door to see a man stealing his bike. He asked him what he was doing and the man said, ‘I am stealing your bike, what the does it look like I am doing?’ All while walking towards my son and reaching for his waistband. … My son was able to get back inside and yelled that he was calling the cops. The man left with the bike. He tossed it on the bushes so he can come back later for it.”

Stop sign

“The intersection of Crocker Drive and Donner Way is now a high-stress crossing for cars and pedestrians entering from Donner at rush hour, given that Crocker Drive is now being used as a Highway 99 alternative into midtown.”

– Edward Ortiz Sr.

Good Samaritans

Alison and Arlene Fish-Turner “want to thank the Good Samaritans that stopped and helped my mother-in-law this morning (Sept. 22). My motherinlaw collapsed at Spurgin Alley and Crocker Drive.

Austin, an ER nurse, stopped to assist my wife and her mother, and another person called 911. … Two police officers just happened to be driving by. We could not have asked for any better neighbors and support system.”

Newspaper carrier

“When Juan and Alma (Rodriguez) were the carriers, I collected the rubber bands and rain bags and left them on the porch, where they would see them when they dropped the papers. The new carrier has been very reliable for several months, although he/she/they leave the paper out by the edge of the lawn, by the sidewalk. So, I didn’t know where or whether to leave the rubber bands. Last night, I taped a bag of bands to the lamppost by where the paper is left, with a little sign saying, ‘carrier rubber bands,’ hoping it could be seen in the dark. When I got up this morning, I went to go check. First thing I noticed was my papers were right on the porch, not by the sidewalk! And, yes, the bag was gone.”

– Carlos Alcala

Thanksgiving dinner

Julie Bottarini, who said she is new to Sacramento, asked where six adults could go out for Thanksgiving dinner. She said they “would like to go someplace nice without breaking the bank.”

A search of found 13 restaurants with reservations for six available on Thanksgiving in the “$$” category (lower price), including Capitol Garage, Claim Jumper, Il Fornaio, Rio City Café and Sheraton Grand.

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