Minneapolis Minnesota’s chief of police wants the government to License the city’s beggars because he feels that something needs to be done to help police deal with aggressive panhandling.
I think I can almost understand the logic behind this, but having said that, there are 2 really simple reasons why a system like this would never work.
First of all, what good does putting them in jail do, they’re homeless for God sakes. They’ll probably live better in jail than they do now, and not only that, but they’d be living there for free. There’s quite a threat to hang over the head of somebody who lives in a box. “If you don’t obey this new law, we’ll put a roof over your head and feed you 3 free meals a day. Oh and we might also give you a job and pay you honest to goodness American money for doing it. We’re serious mister, so you’d better straighten up and fly right or it’s off to the big house for you.” Yeah, that’ll teach those panhandling pricks a thing or 2. Probably scare them right off the streets in fact. Good thinkin’ Chief, you’re a friggin genius!
And secondly, ask yourself this question. If somebody happens to violate the terms of the new law, how is that person going to get the money to pay the fine? You don’t have to be a super genius to figure that one out.
But even though there are such obvious glaring problems with this idea, I’ll bet that there’ll be at least 1 politician in the area willing to “take a look at it,” which frightens me. It also angers me, but more because in general people in government can never just come right out and say that something is a bad idea, or better yet, that it’s just plain stupid. And even on those rare occasions when somebody does, he or she either feels the need to apologize for what was said or is more than happy to completely change positions on the issue the moment that there’s something to be gained by doing so.
But I shouldn’t have to tell you all of this. Politicians have done more than enough to earn the reputation they have on their own, and I’m sure they don’t need me to point it out and talk it up. So instead I’ll just go to bed and watch American Justice. Considering the circumstances, it kind of seems appropriate.