Apparently, the Democrats are trying to hide the homeless during their convention in Colorado. A group that’s helping organize the convention says it’s going to distribute 500 tickets to the movies, the zoo, and museums to the homeless to get them away from the Democratic convention. Food Not Bombs organizers also claim that Denver officials will start strictly enforcing “Come On In,” an effort to force charities that serve outdoor meals to the homeless to move indoors.
This tactic only serves two purposes. First, it lends to the right-wing’s highly pushed notion that Obama is an elitist. What could be more elitist than forcing the poorest of the poor away from, rather than invite them into, your surroundings? Even the Republicans say–at least for now–they’re not moving a local homeless shelter from their convention’s surroundings.
And second, it shows that the Democrats, including Obama, prefer to ignore homelessness and other urban issues (though, homelessness is a rural issue as well), rather than face them head on thus emphasizing the party’s shift to the right–or more accurately, Obama’s previously consistent centrist views.
The presidential candidates must start taking urban issues seriously. Their incredible lack of interest in poverty, homelessness, transportation, and sustainable infrastructure show that they’re not in touch with reality, and that photo opportunities are more important than those most in need.