San Francisco homeless man: ‘they pay you to be homeless here’

Wednesday I wrote about Michael Shellenberger’s piece describing a new “Linkage Center” in San Francisco, one which he reported had become “a supervised drug consumption site.” That story and a follow up by the San Francisco Chronicle got some attention on Bret Baier’s show this week.

Shellenberger has also posted a number of videos on Twitter talking to people in San Francisco about the city’s current approach to homelessness. One street person told him, “they pay you to be homeless here.” (Some NSFW language in this clip.)

Here’s more of the same interview:

Shellenberger posted some additional videos Thursday. Here’s one shot a block from the new Linkage Center featuring several fentanyl addicts who are clearly not interested in detoxing.

Shellenberger also posted portions of interviews with the directors of a couple of leading drug policy organizations. It’s interesting to me that the basic argument here is “bodily autonomy.” In other words, you can’t force someone to get treatment or proper medication for mental health issues.

Obviously the issue of mandated treatment and “bodily autonomy” is also relevant to the argument over vaccine mandates. I wonder if the people who support allowing addicts to use drugs on the streets would also support someone who refuses to be vaccinated on those grounds. Alternatively, would people who refuse to get vaccinated agree that drug addicts have the right to refuse drug treatment even when they’re pretty clearly near the point of death? In any case, the question what can you force people to do? is at the center of both of these issues.

My own take is that I’d support mandated treatment for at least some hardcore users because they aren’t fully in control of themselves. Mandates vaccines for adults seem like a different thing because the people choosing not to get them aren’t under the sway of addiction. But it’s interesting that the left’s take seems to be the opposite, i.e. lots of support for mandating vaccines but little support for mandating drug treatment which is why San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, etc. all look the way they do.

Finally, here’s one more interview with a farmer talking about how homeless camps have killed the farmer’s market he’s been selling produce at for 20 years. Who wants to take their family downtown to see a bunch of addicts sprawled out on the sidewalk?

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