Check out this map that allows us to see which neighborhoods voted in favor of Prop L, the Sit-Lie Law. People in the Haight voted NO, even though perception is that the proposition was generated from that neighborhood. This was posted on the FaceBook page of San Francisco Stands Against Sit / Lie
Also of interest is a piece in the New York Times questioning the bias of the reporting on Prop L in the San Francisco Chronicle.
Countering that trend was an in-depth article written by the wonderful new owner of an independent bookstore on Haight, Praveen Madan. He effectively articulates the subtleties of the arguments pro and con, and clarifies the issue actually at hand: frustration with the homeless themselves, who are already under immense pressure from laws that make practically everything they can do illegal — as if being homeless isn’t hard enough.
We couldn’t possibly lock up every homeless person even if we were legally allowed to. The July 24th issue of the Economist had a cover story on America’s record of locking up people. According to the Economist, “America incarcerates five times more people than Britain, nine times more than Germany, and twelve times more than Japan.” Noted criminologist Michael Tonry has decried America’s over-reliance on the criminal justice system as a lack of “political maturity and public civility.” It’s ironic that proponents of the rebranded civil sidewalks law think they are promoting civility.