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The Luxury of Living in Cars By Uncle Len, the Immobile
Living in a shed, I have always been envious of my fellow homeless people who live in cars. Sure, you can’t get up and walk around, as one car liver said to me (someone living in a car, not his actual “liver”), but you can drive away, while this is a little difficult to do with a shed, but where there is a will there is a way.
“As the gap between the rich and the poor continues to increase, the middle class is steadily eroding. In fact, I recently gave my readers 15 signs that the middle class in America is being systematically destroyed. More Americans are falling out of the middle class and into poverty with each passing day, and this is one of the big reasons why the number of homeless is surging. For example, the number of people living on the street in L.A. has shot up 75 percent over the last 6 years. But of course L.A. is far from alone. Other major cities on the west coast are facing similar problems, and that includes Seattle. It turns out that the Emerald City has seen a 46 percent rise in the number of people sleeping in their vehicles in just the past year…
The number of people who live in their vehicles because they can’t find affordable housing is on the rise, even though the practice is illegal in many U.S. cities. The number of people residing in campers and other vehicles surged 46 percent over the past year, a recent homeless census in Seattle’s King County, Washington found. The problem is “exploding” in cities with expensive housing markets, including Los Angeles, Portland and San Francisco, according to Governing magazine. Amazon, Microsoft and other big tech companies are in the Seattle area. It is a region that is supposedly “prospering”, and yet this is going on. Sadly, it isn’t just major urban areas that are seeing more people sleeping in their vehicles. Over in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, many of the homeless sleep in their vehicles even in the middle of winter…
Stephanie Monroe, managing director of Children Youth & Family Services at Volunteers of America, Dakotas, tells a similar story. At least 25 percent of the non-profit’s Sioux Falls clients have lived in their vehicles at some point, even during winter’s sub-freezing temperatures. “Many of our communities don’t have formal shelter services,” she said in an interview. “It can lead to individuals resorting to living in their cars or other vehicles.” It is time to admit that we have a problem. The number of homeless in this country is surging, and we need to start coming up with some better solutions. But instead, many communities are simply passing laws that make it illegal for people to sleep in their vehicles…
A recent survey by the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty (NLCHP), which tracks policies in 187 cities, found the number of prohibitions against vehicle residency has more than doubled during the last decade.”
As homelessness is set to become something of a fashion accessory, among the former middle class, we need to ensure that sleeping rough is not outlawed. There should be no law against sleeping in one’s car, or sleeping on the street, so long as no danger is posed to wild life, such as the city rat population. Thus, I draw the line at sleeping in the gutter, because if there was a flash rain, the sleeper, no doubt zonked on drugs and alcohol, may get washed down the drain. Normally no-one would care if Anglo types like me got washed down the drain, but there could be blockage problems, and flooding into ritzy department stores, upsetting people with money to burn, who would get their nice footwear moist.
As I finished writing this by flickering , dying candle light on a scrap of dirty paper, soon to mail to the editor in Adelaide (wait, I am in Adelaide), the rain begins to dance on the galvanised iron (isn’t it steel?) of the roof of my shed, and then beats down with the fury of some mad cosmic drummer in the heavy metal band of the universe. I am glad that, with my cockroach friends, I have such a vast array of riches and am not sleeping out there, where the wild things are, tonight: