California’s War on the Homeless: From Streetside Attacks to Policies of Dehumanization

Published on Truthout, by James Anderson, Aug 16, 2016;

… A Statewide Nightmare of Housing Deprivation:

The most recent murders and beatings are just the latest in a long history of various forms of violence against homeless people in San Diego and throughout California, a state with the dubious distinction of leading the nation in housing deprivation.  

California has the highest number of homeless people of any state in the US. According to the most recent US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Annual Homeless Assessment Report, the state is home to 26 percent of the country’s homeless, with the highest percentage — some 64 percent — ‘unsheltered,’ meaning they stay in places considered not intended for human habitation, such as cars, parks, sidewalks, streets and abandoned buildings. The estimated number of homeless people in Los Angeles topped 28,400 in 2016, with some 46,874 in Los Angeles County, and San Diego County has over 8,600 homeless, with an estimated 5,093 residing in the city of San Diego.

Of the five largest cities in the US with the highest percentage of the total population homeless, four are in California. San Diego is fifth on that list, while San Francisco is number one … //

… California: A Case Study in Violence Against Homeless People: … //
San Diego’s Contradictory Approach to Homelessness: … //
Living With Constant Insecurity: … //
Pushes for and Against Hate Crime Legislation: … //

… “I think hate crime legislation has proven to be a failed approach — it does not protect vulnerable groups, but does strengthen a racist police and prison system,” Willse told Truthout. “Those laws do not keep people safe. And while individual acts of violence against people living without shelter must be stopped, these kinds of laws, by turning attention to individual perpetrators, turn attention away from the real and systemic source of violence — the state and capitalism.”

In his book, Willse unpacks the invention of “chronic homelessness” as a category and the initiatives that accompany it. “The proliferation of chronic homelessness programs, the circulation of funding, the commissioning of studies and reports — all of this forms part of the nonprofit industrial complex, where the post-social state meets postindustrial service and knowledge industries,” he writes. “Contrary to the rhetoric that associates ‘the homeless’ with waste and cost, housing insecurity and deprivation prove to be sites of economic productivity in which individuals organized as ‘chronically homeless’ become the raw material out of which studies and services are produced.”

Those initiatives remove homeless people from places where they might impede consumerism, Willse explained, and simultaneously invest in a nonprofit industry of population management — one with adverse effects for challenging the conditions responsible for the creation of homelessness in California and beyond.

“The social services approach to homelessness has had a depoliticizing effect — so we deal with individual cases rather than the big picture,” Willse told Truthout. “And I think linking those movements to movements against policing and prisons is a key next step.”

(full text, hyper links, related links).

(James Anderson is a writer, journalist, scholar and social theorist. He received a Ph.D. in mass communication and media arts from Southern Illinois University Carbondale in May 2016. He was born and raised in the Midwest, but now struggles to live in Southern California).


auf Mein Schreibstuben Blog, Kommentare von Heidi, 17. Aug 2016:

Will it be Petras’s Apocalypse or Hammond’s Hopeful Enlightenment? US Delusion of Empire, Obstacle to Peace, on Dissident Voice, by Eric Walberg, August 15, 2016: it is time to assess the legacy that President Obama bequeaths us …;

Successful due to tradition, on Current Concerns, by Dr phil René Roca, Aug 15, 2016;

Agriculture and direct democracy (part 2), on Current Concerns/page 2, by Dr rer publ Werner Wüthrich, Aug 15, 2016: rude awakening in the First World War;

Published on KASHMIR and IDPs, by K.N. Pandita:

Inside IS – die Diskussion, 45.25 min, von phoenix am 12. Juli 2016 in der Phoenix Runde;
Jürgen Todenhöfer on YouTube (films, talkshows, diskussions);

Intuition als Grundlage der Forschungen – Andreas Popp im Interview bei CelleTV, 16.00 min, von Wissensmanufaktur am 8. Juni 2016;

… and this:

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