HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » This country is fucked in...
Introducing Discussionist: A new forum by the creators of DU

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:22 PM

This country is fucked in the head!..

Sorry for the rant, but it is a well deserved rant.

Wednesday, I was on a special insider's tour of a large zoo-like institution in the Southwest... I won't be more specific.

They do great work with endangered animals and the like. Great place.

We toured their hospital facility. As modern as any people hospital. Set up for surgery and exams on animals from mice to giraffes. All the bells and whistles.. blood-gas analyzers, x-ray, intensive care unit, recovery rooms.... The nurses station looked like the modern space-age station...... monitors, computers, etc.

As we neared home - in our very little, rural desert town, I spied the local homeless schizophrenic wandering down the road. The guy hangs around town during the days.. talking to himself... and sleeps in an abandoned shed on the outskirts of town. He eats whatever he can find/scrounge. He's cold in the winter and hot (117) in the summer. He's dressed in rags.

The cops have tried to get him to a better place, but he drifts back. He's not - in the strict legal definition - a danger to himself or others, but his chances of dying from the heat or cold or hunger are certainly good.

Why is it that this country takes better care of animals than they take care of people like him?

The Fascist in me wants some agency to clap a net over him and take him somewhere where he can get food, shelter, and medical care. If we had such a place. The do-gooder in me takes him food and blankets. Sometimes, he's so paranoid that he doesn't trust the food or clothing.

I don't begrudge the animals the best of health care.

I just want us to take care of our fellow citizens who are ill.

We have the best weapons systems in the world.... but we can't take care of our own.

Thus the "country is fucked in the head"...

24 replies, 2328 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply This country is fucked in the head!.. (Original post)
Bigmack Jan 2013 OP
snooper2 Jan 2013 #1
patrice Jan 2013 #3
patrice Jan 2013 #4
randome Jan 2013 #6
patrice Jan 2013 #12
JDPriestly Jan 2013 #19
patrice Jan 2013 #24
spanone Jan 2013 #10
snooper2 Jan 2013 #11
DaveJ Jan 2013 #20
patrice Jan 2013 #2
Still Sensible Jan 2013 #5
Bigmack Jan 2013 #8
Still Sensible Jan 2013 #9
MrMickeysMom Jan 2013 #7
samsingh Jan 2013 #13
Spitfire of ATJ Jan 2013 #14
Ricochet21 Jan 2013 #15
LittleGirl Jan 2013 #16
JDPriestly Jan 2013 #17
DainBramaged Jan 2013 #18
KauaiK Jan 2013 #21
Lady Freedom Returns Jan 2013 #22
hue Jan 2013 #23

Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:24 PM

1. Some people don't want help

that doesn't mean our country is "fucked in the head"

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to snooper2 (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:29 PM

3. AND it doesn't necessarily mean that it isn't, either. nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to snooper2 (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:34 PM

4. Doesn't "want" help or anything else, imply intentionality? How intentional is a schizophrenic? nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to patrice (Reply #4)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:36 PM

6. So what's the solution, then? Forcibly take him off the street and place him in an institution?

Mind you, there doesn't HAVE to be a solution. I'm just posing the question.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to randome (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:52 PM

12. I don't know the solution, though I'd guess that some intentionality should be

preserved as a means to develop better coping skills, so it's a case by case question as to how much purpose/will/intentionality remains in a given situation, not one-size-fits-all restraint or medications.

I really brought the point up about schizophrenics, because I'm also trying to refer to the fungible-ness/how maleable "want" is and to suggest there might be a significant difference between want and need. Also, lots of people are more reactionary in how they identify what they want and what they don't want, including help, so I don't think what people want is the only criteria for what our country should be and whether there is something wrong with how we are meeting our shared responsibilities.

We should do some honest thinking about wants and needs and help and individuals.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to patrice (Reply #12)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:07 PM

19. Have you ever worked with homeless people?

Because I have. What they need is a safe place to sleep at night and a safe place to go during the day. On cold nights, they seek shelter just like everyone else.

They also need the same kind of medical care that the rest of us need. They may not want it, especially if the person treating them does not give them respect.

And finally, they need respect, just like the rest of us. They don't need to be looked down on. Sometimes they do need to be talked to, but not by random people on the street.

Those who really do not want to go inside may need a blanket, someplace to eat and anonymity.

There is something wrong with how we are meeting our shared responsibilities when it comes to the homeless. And a lot of the fault is on Wall Street right now -- not normally, but now, because I am seeing older people and homeless couples who look like they have lost their homes and just don't know where to go from where they were before Wall Street pulled out the rug under our economy.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to JDPriestly (Reply #19)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 07:07 PM

24. I spent quite a bit of time with our Occupy here, about a year. We had lots of homeless and

street people. I felt my role was to help keep the camp, so I cooked and brought stuff, spent many full days in camp, took people for showers at my son's apartment, had people for sleep-overs at my house for a total of something under 3 weeks' worth of nights, camped overnight myself in the Occupy's camp for a total of something a little less than a month's worth of nights, went to lots of meetings and several marches and demonstrations. Yeah, the cold weather was the worst of it; I stayed through some of that (I have pretty good camping gear). The cold weather, people with serious medical conditions, and the noise at night as we were in a park near a big train station . . . I don't know how homeless people do this.

I have helped out around Catholic Worker House, but I had never been closer to Homeless than encounters with panhandlers. Lots of things happened around and in the Occupy and I learned a lot, but I'm no expert, though I see the whole Homeless situation entirely different from how I used to think about it. That's largely due to one homeless friend I made, whom I am friends with still. She has a job now and is indulging her passion for providing strong supervision over the lives of her grown daughters and 2 grandchildren.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to snooper2 (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:45 PM

10. do animals want our help?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to spanone (Reply #10)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:50 PM

11. My cat is getting lazy in his old age

Sometimes he sits by the washer wanting to lay up there but is to lazy to jump...

So he sits there and moo's at me until I pick him up and give him a chariot ride to his spot LOL

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to snooper2 (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:19 PM

20. Some people don't know how to ASK for help.

They know they need help but they don't have that instinctive thing that motivates most people to "grab what's theirs."

We're living in a Christian nation though where the meek inherit the earth, as in, the earth is all they get, and are homeless.

So I agree with the premise that this country is fucked -- everyone is so self obsessed they won't give a dime to those who are too distracted or for whatever reason not getting the help they need.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:28 PM

2. Righteous rant, Bigmack! I especially like, "The Fascist in me ..." if ALL of us could admit that,

that would be a good start.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:35 PM

5. I'm absolutely in favor of drastic improvements in how we treat

homelessness and mental illness.

But your post features a not insignificant part of the problem: "The cops have tried to get him to a better place, but he drifts back."

Admittedly, that could be in large part a result of the shortcomings of the "better place" that was provided in his case. To me, it would seem that food, shelter, physical and mental health treatment would be the least we should collectively do, but can only assume that maybe only the first two were what this better place offered.



Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Still Sensible (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:41 PM

8. I wasn't clear...

... there IS no institutional "better place".

I meant that the cops put him on a bus for a bigger town/city, hoping somebody there could do something for him. (of course, that also gets him out of the hair of the local cops and citizens.)

There apparently no institutions for people like him, since he is not an imminent danger to self or others.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Reply #8)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:43 PM

9. Ah.... Thanks for the clarification. n/t

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 03:40 PM

7. Actually, "the fascist" isn't how you'd describe your first action...

That's more like, "the socialist" in you!

Society has empathy for defenseless animals (socialism) and finds a way to fund it (well, if it were government run, it would be socialist).

But, I get your point. Here we are... not even recognizing when PEOPLE are defenseless. There is NO social safety net.

This country IS fucked up in the head about it!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 05:38 PM

13. yes

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 05:57 PM

14. Meanwhile, the local churches are spending money on bigger churches....

....to take in more and more money....

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 05:59 PM

15. Bless you bigmack

keep spreading your word

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:02 PM

16. You know...some people don't get health care unless they have that insurance card

and that is what makes me madder than hell. If people want to treat their animals like family, that's great. I want all citizens to get that healthcare and that my friend, is socialism. Good rant.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:03 PM

17. Thanks. He needs a place of his own and some respect.

Some medical care on the side.

That's what most homeless people need.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:04 PM

18. "We have the best weapons systems in the world.... but we can't take care of our own."

Brought to you by our Republican friends, death before life.


Great OP.


Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:34 PM

21. Try being a family member to someone like this

who cannot get help; does not qualify for state help or disability; and on the street. IF they knew they needed help; if they knew how to get help, they wouldn't be mentally ill or disabled.

You can thank Ronald Reagan for making it more difficult for family members to get mentally ill people the help and medication they need.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:39 PM

22. Helping homeless is not something you can do with a one size fits all plan.

Each person has a different reason for being there. Some due to financial breakdown, others due to health reasons of some sort, some due to different addictions. Others, due to a natural disaster.

For many it is a mix of things. As for shelters, well, many are not what they seem. Many would rather stay on the streets than to put up with how many shelters make you feel. One would be surprised how some of the shelters make many not trust those that wish to help. I have even seen shelters that lie about how many beds are full. They say that they don't have enough staff to open all the beds. Yet the beds that they said they can't have filled due to lack of staff will be open the next night with the same amount of staff.

There is even programs out there that are supposed to help homeless with jobs. Instead they make them feel like losers ( as if they need help in feeling that way) and break them down in a way that they become the best boot licker's that a person can hire if they get hired. Many employers can spot applications from these programs from a mile away. You can take two different applications next to each other and they will look so close to identical that it is scary. Add to it that, many of these programs "hint" to you to lie on the applications. That really helps in this day of google and background checks. There is one, I will not mention by name, that brags that they use the same technical for that last 25 years. they call it working the hidden job market. Their hidden job market is now the normal market. And many employers do not like getting pestered for an interview before you even put in an application. And they hate you to to place applications on line. You can do that at the library on your weekend, they don't wast their time with that.

The thought that saddens me is that your homeless person you speak of may not have started as a schizophrenic. The situation could have made him that way.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Bigmack (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 06:59 PM

23. Zoos, circuses, insane asylums, even hospitals & nursing homes were much worse in the past.

Those places rivaled hell, and some still do.

Yes today some animals have lives many times better than most who live in 3rd world countries.
And there are homeless Peeps who prefer the streets, parks communities under freeways etc. than shelters or group homes etc. For example, there are communities of homeless living under freeways and parks in LA and other cities.
I agree with Bigmark, "This country is...." We have always been as has most countries in which the rich are the powerful.
We have a lot of work to do!

http://www.dailybreeze.com/news/ci_17796130

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread