tungwaiyip.info

home

about me

links

Blog

< July 2016 >
SuMoTuWeThFrSa
      1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31      

past articles »

Click for San Francisco, California Forecast

San Francisco, USA

 

Beyond Homelessness

The Chronicle is running a series Beyond Homelessness. They call the problem a civic disgrace. They have an editorial proclaim the reduction of homelessness to the extent humanly possible must be San Francisco’s No. 1 priority.

I applaud their call of civic duty. I am frustrated by the problem as anyone do. But grandstanding aside, I am not optimistic that the city will make much progress. 10 or 20 years we will revisit the issue. I am afraid what the future may not be much of an improvement of compares to today.

Their language concerns me. We talk about political will, about holding public official responsible. But what if this is a problem so difficult that nobody really know how to solve them? I compare this to some recurrent campaign to "cure cancer". It makes a good slogan for a rally. The problem is, to the best knowledge current science, we do not really know how to cure cancer. Some ambitious politician might "declare war on cancer", or set an arbitrary time line like solving the problem in 10 years. But I can see little scientific basis that would lead to such solution. As much as we wish, these political campaigns, without scientific basis to backup, will just fizzle out sooner or later.

Unfortunately I think this is likely what our current campaign on homelessness heading. If it is about provide enough funding and services, these will be easy problem well within the capability of the politician. After all, we are already pouring sizable resource in the tune of 240 millions dollars a year into this. But I am afraid these resources only scratch the surface. The deeper problem is that some people who has lost their capability to take care of themselves and function in the society. Fixing people is much harder problme than fix things, which mostly call for more funding. I don't even know if the bureaucracy has any place in fixing a person. Much more helpful than the bureaucracy is perhaps the support from a social network.

To further the cure cancer analogy, it is commonly accepted that the best way to fight cancer is to prevent it from developing in the first place. Living a healthy life style, proper nutrition, early screening are way more effective than to treat cancer after it happens. So our attention should go beyond fixing the problem after it happens to minimize someone ending up in the street in the first place. In the long run, if we can reduce new homeless by prevention, it maybe the most effective way to keep the problem under control.

2016.07.04 comments

 

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

past articles »

 

BBC News

 

Jamal Khashoggi disappearance: Last column published (18 Oct 2018)

 

Brexit: UK to consider longer transition period (18 Oct 2018)

 

Banksy: How Love is in the Bin's shredding did not go to plan (18 Oct 2018)

 

Norway apologises to its World War Two 'German girls' (17 Oct 2018)

 

In pictures: 'Eye of Istanbul' photographer Ara Guler dies at 90 (18 Oct 2018)

 

Angry crowds block women from Sabarimala Hindu temple (17 Oct 2018)

 

Cherry blossoms bloom unexpectedly in Japan (18 Oct 2018)

 

Steve Penny: Ex-USA Gymnastics head held over Nassar case (18 Oct 2018)

 

Harvey Weinstein accuser told to delete phone files (18 Oct 2018)

 

Sri Lanka's Sirisena calls India over 'murder plot' (17 Oct 2018)

more »

 

SF Gate

 

Pension fund officials want Zuckerberg removed as Facebook chairman (17 Oct 2018)

 

Fed officials discussed hiking rates to ‘restrictive’ level (17 Oct 2018)

 

Twitter airs election meddling data (17 Oct 2018)

 

Ship traffic, Oct. 16 (17 Oct 2018)

 

Ship traffic, October 18 (17 Oct 2018)

 

Only 1 Calif. city cracks Glassdoor's 'Best Cities for Jobs' list; Midwest dominates (17 Oct 2018)

more »


Site feed Updated: 2018-Oct-18 03:00