Saturday, November 19, 2011

No more begging in Long Beach

I bought the Press-Telegram on Tuesday, November 8th because I wanted to read headline story: LB to weigh beggary law. I believe Nov. 8th was neighbor John's birthday; the day his lady friend came for a visit. The morning was so noisy, I thought it was the handymen fixing something, except for the lady's voice. Maybe it is John's sister, I thought, come to help him pack up and move. Door opening, slamming, stuff being dragged outside my window, plus all the kitchen noise inside, yelling between people. Went on for a couple of hours.

Saturday night I finally called the police; Sunday afternoon John spoke to me ~ telling me about his lady, birthday and her brother staying with Chris. Ah, I see. Anyway the newspaper never got read. Nor did a book I was trying to finish; nor an article I was trying to edit. So, finally reading it. Do not know if City Council passed the law.

I was under impression Long Beach already had an aggressive panhandler law. Councilwoman Suja Lowenthal proposed the measure. Every new regulation in Long Beach that I totally disagree with was started by her. An Occupy Long Beach event was dubbed SujaPalooza. I read comments about the event at Facebook's OLB page. Seems there were suddenly signs closing the park before the usual 10PM  where event was being held. Seems Ms. Lowenthal lives a few blocks from the park. I guess she felt threatened.

Do not know if City Council passed her law. I see no reason to prohibit people from asking other people for money. My old joke: what is the difference between a panhandler and a telemarketer? I have been subjected so some very aggressive telemarketers. I only remember one aggressive, nasty panhandler ~ 1990s, San Diego. I am sure I meet some of the offensive panhandlers here in Long Beach; Tom A. comes to mind. Basically, though, just say no; most homeless do not panhandle and those that do consider it a number's job, ask enough people ~ sort of like the real estate sales rule of thumb ~ sell one in sixty.

Oy, I am babbling here. Be back in a minute.

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