Friday, April 8, 2011

Scorched earth in the Haight-Ashbury

It seems San Francisco's absurd new referendum law against sitting or lying on the sidewalk isn't merely ineffective at disappearing scruffy people. It's also karmically bouncing back on the Haight-Ashbury business and property owners who most loudly promoted the sit-lie referendum. Writer Scott James reports in the Bay Citizen that business has dropped on the main Janis Joplin nostalgia drag from Ashbury to Cole -- and one theory is that the poor punters out there have taken literally all that electioneering hype about the supposed dangerousness of Haight-Ashbury street people.

Funny how a security-conscious public can be clumsy, lacking the sophistication to know they're meant to be frightened for voting purposes, yet brave when it's time to go shopping.

BTW, the other day a smart lawyer around here put the right name on that sit-lie law: "a hate law," he said. Hadn't heard the term. He thinks it was coined in the Colorado anti-gay-marriage debate. Clarifies matters, a label like that.

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