Too many embrace 'poor me' attitude
MY friend had his 1-year-old daughter's birthday luau at Ala Moana Beach Park in January. He went through the Department of Parks and Recreation to get a permit for that day. We were on the grass near the Ewa concessions and from the beginning we were confronted by homeless asking for food and handouts. We politely told them we were there to have a baby party, but the badgering continued and increasingly became more hostile to the extent that the police were called. The party had to end early because the guests didn't feel safe. In broad daylight, in the busiest beach park in the state.
Yes, we have a homeless problem, but it's not the one the homeless advocates would have you believe.
CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STAR-BULLETIN.COM
Mike Oliver was among about 100 homeless people who spent the night of March 27 outside Honolulu Hale after being ousted from Ala Moana Beach Park.
Ala Moana park is not safe and hasn't been for years. This is especially true for women and children. Where does it say the homeless get to hijack city parks and beaches? They'll tell you the public and city are abrupt and insensitive toward them, while I've witnessed the exact same behavior from the homeless.
And what percentage of them do you think actually pay taxes? Unless there is a new tax on shopping carts, I don't think it would be very high. Unbeknownst to most of the "citizens" of Ala Moana, there is a taxation sliding scale in which people who earn more, pay more taxes. It's part of a social contract that includes helping the homeless but also allows our citizens to enjoy the parks they pay for. City spokesman Bill Brennan summed it up succinctly when he said Parks and Recreation is not the department to deal with the homeless.
I lived paycheck to paycheck and ate noodles and peanut butter for more years than I care to remember but I made it out of that situation by looking forward, persevering and working very hard. Enough with the "woe is me" stories told by the homeless and their advocates. Do they think they have a monopoly on loss, poor choices and bad luck? It's what you choose to do after life deals you a bum card that will determine who you are and what your destiny is.
Wave after wave of non- English-speaking immigrants who embraced the tenets of personal accountability and hard work will tell you the same thing.
Pat Kelly lives in Honolulu.