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Do you think moving the homeless shelter away from downtown is a good idea?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on August 6, 2009

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Photo of Clay Belcher

“I’m a big supporter of the Family Promise network, where homeless people are housed in local churches, so I think that decentralization is probably a good idea.”

Photo of Amanda Sprague-Brunk

“I don’t think it’s necessarily a good idea because I think it’s pretty sad that people, instead of focusing on what can fix the problem, they want to shove these people away and pretend they don’t exist.”

Photo of Ellen Waters

“No, I think it should probably stay downtown in a more central area. I think it would better serve people for it to be closer to downtown.”

Photo of Robert Bickers

“No, because the shelter needs to be located where it can provide the most good for the most people and that currently is downtown.”

Comments

ewaters 4 years, 8 months ago

whew, there's a lot of unnecessary anger in here. hey pogo, what's your deal with link? I've ate there plenty of times and its awesome. I'd go more often if i didn't have a job with which i buy my own food. and as for the people that go there, a lot of them are able bodied people that actually do have jobs. add to that the mentally ill that frequent there as well as the transients. its not a bad crowd. i think your response to the idea of link is over reactionary. its food. for people. so what? and as for whoever called me naive for saying the homeless shelter should be downtown, i think that's just a bit rude and not very well thought out. the homeless would be ostracized in a highly residential area, downtown is close to I70, which brings a lot of people here. particularly close to downtown. its not that crazy. whether or not you agree with providing the social service of a homeless shelter, it is not naive to say it should (assuming it will be provided) be in a location that is close to the main highway, close to food (LINK! yum), and close to businesses and potential job opportunities.

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Stuart Evans 4 years, 8 months ago

Roads_Collar (Anonymous) says… Why not have the shelter close to where those who need it “reside”? There seems to be such a feeling that the further away we can get them, the happier Downtown will be


don't the people who need the shelter "reside" at the shelter? so no matter where you put it, that's where they'll be. I think that they should not be upset about location, after all, they are getting a free home and food. Can the shelter give them free bus passes as well so that if they do find a work opportunity (ya right) that they will have no excuses about getting to it.

and yes, the fewer homeless downtown the happier it will be. just because they're not allowed to verbally beg any longer doesn't make their plea's any less annoying. and frankly, some of them aren't very good at the instruments they try to play (i'm looking at you maraca girl)

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Donnuts 4 years, 8 months ago

I don't care about the homeless anymore formerly having been one; I found a girlfriend to take me in. I sure could have used a grant for school or an art scholarship or something that would have been a hand up. Then we would not have to house violent crack addicted hookers and their pimps with legitimately concerned people with a conscience. I think Don's Steakhouse is everything they could imagine. Businesses downtown don't need the added aggravation of panhandlers and there isn't anything down there they need anyway. If you want the town to survive you would allow for shopping of college students which is the only real reason Lawrence exists anyway, but what should I care for the businesses downtown, nobody that owned any of them cared a crap for me either.

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storm 4 years, 8 months ago

I dont think moving the homeless from downtown is a good idea for the people who are homeless. They need to ask for money from pedestrians, and use the library when it's cold. Anywhere else has less amenties.

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Machiavelli_mania 4 years, 8 months ago

I don't think the plight of the Homeless should be taken from mainstream view. This is a sign of Bush's debtorship society.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

wow you would call these intelligent remarks

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Donnuts 4 years, 8 months ago

Here let me rewrite an essay. Want sympathy from me?

Let's just line them up and shoot them, we have enough people to cause problems anyway.

Want a warm heart; should have brought me up better. You know it takes a village to raise a building. Which one did he walk into I think I will follow him to find out what he does next. The intelligent remarks remind me why I stopped reading this paper and the intelligent comments remind me why I left town to live elsewhere. Too bad because Lawrence sure could have some resources. If you ask me the homeless problem in Lawrence started with some creep named Phil that lifted tips from waiters off Pizza Hut tables. I was just a poor college kid trying to make my way in life and some liberal minded @sshole has to come and muck it all up for his personal gain, because I won't drop everything to do what he wants. Causing my life some chain effect when all they do when you give them the time is bawl about how life isn't going their way and blame you, well sucker mine aint too great either. Send them all to Manhattan they are half the reason there are so many homeless anyway. Got potatochips?

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Steven Gaudreau 4 years, 8 months ago

Falling, It really does not matter if there was a treaty or not. We decided not to honor it and there is nothing you can do about it. The Indians were conquered and their land was taken. The only rights they were given was the right to stay alive and follow the rules. War is evil and the conquered die. Sorry dude, it seems your ancestors lost.

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

It's August, my neck is pretty much brown.

that is funny RI!

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 4 years, 8 months ago

It's August, my neck is pretty much brown.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

"I thought most of you bigots would be bashing homosexuals on the other blog by now." failingwhiletyping

Another miss, Hoss. Keep on chucking. Maybe something will stick.

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

my teeth? that's right I almost forgot those.

can I borrow some of your candy corns?

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

Don't forget to put your teeth in before you bbq. dam rednecks

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puddleglum 4 years, 8 months ago

as long as they get that junk away from my house on kentuck, I sure am happy...gonna have a bbq just for the occasion.

wheeee.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

I thought most of you bigots would be bashing homosexuals on the other blog by now.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

Not if one is accurate with the toss.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

specifically the land cessions treaties threw out the country. Almost all of them mention the fund to be put into a general fund to be held intrust by the government. Almost all of the treaties were not funded per agreement signed in good faith by the US government. If you want to speak about one treaty. How about the Black Hills treaties. The taking of them, and the last administration trying to honor it with an offer of 45 million. The gold taken from the Black Hills during the 1860 was worth more than the offer of today.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

Plato says you have the choice to throw a stone,but once thrown the choice of where that stone falls is not a choice.

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Practicality 4 years, 8 months ago

fallingwhilereading (Anonymous) says…

"Express them to me practicality. I wonder what you know about the circle being homeless, alcoholism, drug addiction."

First off, the "circle" does not start with being homeless. In your scenerio above, the substance abuse is the likely culprit of the cause of homelessness. As most citizens realize, being a chronic drunk or zonked out druggie is not conducive to becoming employed and thus, not being homeless. So, as we see it, these people, in essence, chose to be homeless because they still choose to drink or do drugs. If one wishes to not be homeless, then the first step, for these people, would be to stop their substance abuse.

Now, I understand that it is not easy to break an addiction. But, many people have done it before, and you don't break it by continuing to use. Therefore, it stands to reason, that before someone uses tax money for food and/or shelter, they need to not use drugs and alcohol. It is called an incentive, or a condition, to ensure that the money taken from tax payers is being utililized in a proper manner. If someone still chooses to use, which inhibits them becoming self-sufficient, why should we support them? This appears to be the choice they willingly made, doesn't it?

I know there are many reasons people become homeless. I was just focusing on the drug/alcohol problem with many. There are many people who have found themselves in unfortunate circumstances temporarily, some without any fault of their own, winding up homeless. These people will only remain homeless temporarily, and make the necessary sacrifices to alleviate themselves from that situation. Most people do not mind helping these people out. It is the ones that make no effort to get off drugs or alcohol, and would rather stay homeless and use than be sober and have a place to live, that most grate on peoples nerves.

As for the Native Treaties, there are a million of them, could you please be more specific?

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Pogo 4 years, 8 months ago

Jimbo (Robert bickers) says…

Pogo, at least I'll put my name next to my beliefs and not sit behind the veil of internet anonymity to snipe.

Homeless people are people, not animals to be shuttered away. MOST don't like their situation and are looking for a way out. It's not on me to judge their motives-it's on me to act compassionately without being a sucker. Some will always game the system (just like cabbies, politicians, and artists do) but why should the truly needy suffer because of a few idiots?

Why shove the problem off on someone else, then go on my way thinking what a great thing I've done? Go to the people who are in need, don't force them onto someone else.

Aside: I also support Family Promise, but it only reaches a small percentage of the homeless. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Yeah? What about my challenge to start having your lunch at L.I.N.K. so you can find out what the hades you're talking about instead of thinking about?

I too support helping those who want and need help....but....trust me on this....here in Lawrence the bulk of these people.....you read that right....."these people" are homeless by choice and have adopted a life style.

You will find when you go to L.I.N.K. (which I doubt you do) that you won't see FAMILIES there......you'll see able bodied MEN there.....and a smattering of mentally ill amongst them.

Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center is supposed to be dealing with the mentally ill.....they get City, County, State, and Federal dollars to do same......WHY AREN'T THEY? Easy answer: Bert Nash would rather devote the bulk of it's time to providing "therapy" to the middle class who can't find girl friends or boy friends......what a joke.....

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bronze 4 years, 8 months ago

looks like the local 'power elite' decided to move them out of the hood.

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bronze 4 years, 8 months ago

is the idea to move them closer to Douglas County jail? as a threat?

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

RI - Have you had Bulgarian Swiss? To die for.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 4 years, 8 months ago

MRE cheese rather hoovers, but I have some Austrailian canned cheese that is actually rather good, but the New Zealand canned butter is to die for.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

Express them to me practicality. I wonder what you know about the circle being homeless, alcoholism, drug addiction. Then tell me what you know about native treaties, and rights. I am guessing the last one I will being laugh on how much you know about law counselor.

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bronze 4 years, 8 months ago

KCMO shelters are very near the financial district and east edge of their downtown.

isn't a place with immediate bus & other transit a better location?

here is one example in KCMO at 15th & Charlotte. http://vimeo.com/2150619

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bronze 4 years, 8 months ago

'by far' this is not really a great location.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

"The steak house will keep the homeless from downtown… that is a myth."

Merrill. I totally agree with you on that one. This is not a first, but it is rare.

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Practicality 4 years, 8 months ago

fallingwhilereading (Anonymous) says…

"Do you feel the need to exert your ideas on an conversation? Even though you have no idea about the topic your speaking on."

On which topic would you care for me to elaborate on, the homeless situation in Lawrence, Native American rights, or your complete idiocy?

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jumpin_catfish 4 years, 8 months ago

Ellen, you got a little something hanging out yo nose girl and I vote great idea. Long overdue.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

Thats the best argument I've seen yet.

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Richard Heckler 4 years, 8 months ago

The steak house will keep the homeless from downtown... that is a myth.

Without a place close to downtown to hang out where does anyone expect them to be found....... all of the places nobody wants them to be more often.

Mr Henderson is in a desparate situation. Want people to not be homeless scream at our legislators for making outsourcing of jobs so attractive. Yes those elected officials are a large part of the no jobs and homeless problem in the USA.

8 million jobs have been lost since the Bush white house finally admitted in September the recession was well underway due to big time fraud and globalization. Globalization = bye bye USA jobs. Reaganomics and globalization is a failed economic policy that has taken the USA out as THE financial leader of the world = no jobs and homeless people.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

Bigot I wouldn't categorize myself there, I would say a realist. With historical facts on my side. If you refer to this as being Indian country content. Even the president knows this to be true. Mr. Obama promised to fund the land cession treaties threw out his campaign. I know he was wanting the native vote, but it also gives merit to the native argument over the non-funding of the land cession funds.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

Fallingwhilereading is an outstanding addition to the Big OTS! Jolly good work!

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

You must be a junior practicality. Do you feel the need to exert your ideas on an conversation? Even though you have no idea about the topic your speaking on.

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Practicality 4 years, 8 months ago

fallingwhilereading (Anonymous) says…

"The Ideas, and arguments I see posted here must be coming from some severally M.R. individuals."

Been reading your own posts again I see.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

Johnson County already have their own homeless population. What happens if Johnson County sent their homeless here? Would you be in favor of that. The Ideas, and arguments I see posted here must be coming from some severally M.R. individuals. I guess I shouldn't expect much more from people in this area of the country. The people in this area are as bigoted as I always heard. Sad that most of you don't even know it.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

I should have said your idea is without merit, and your so obtuse.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

Oh so when is a contract voided? Because I would like to stop paying for where I live. Your answer to your question. At 1.29% compounded 150 years. A conservative estaminet would be 33 trillion. If you say its mute after this many years. Than how do the courts award payments to insurance companies after ship wrecks are found. Some of witch are 400 + years old. Your ideas are so obtuse, and without merit.

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couranna1 4 years, 8 months ago

oops typo meant you can do it bro

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couranna1 4 years, 8 months ago

or sheman tolbert www.kasper.org pick up the pace panhandling on Mass in the name of 10th st chessistries and donate the money you donneed to get high with to it you can do it bro

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couranna1 4 years, 8 months ago

what do you think fat wes dalberg and the disgraced former manager liz coleman of the salvation cult Gonna give up some of that panhandling money {kettles} for the new shelter Cmon eat 12 less donuts a day and the new shelter will have the bucks Cmon

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

Autie - Hand each one government cheese and point them in the direction of Johnson County? Capital idea, dear sir!

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couranna1 4 years, 8 months ago

jimbo who gives a S&^T what your real name is to use that to try to win a point is simply pathetic and trite

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Robert bickers 4 years, 8 months ago

Kam: bring help to the helpless, don't make them walk a hundred miles.

And don't go calling me young and naive - I'm neither.

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autie 4 years, 8 months ago

Really? How much do all those entities owe, plus interest? And just who is it owed to? Just curious. I'm thinking that whole argument is pretty much a mute point in 2009.

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Robert bickers 4 years, 8 months ago

Pogo, at least I'll put my name next to my beliefs and not sit behind the veil of internet anonymity to snipe.

Homeless people are people, not animals to be shuttered away. MOST don't like their situation and are looking for a way out. It's not on me to judge their motives-it's on me to act compassionately without being a sucker. Some will always game the system (just like cabbies, politicians, and artists do) but why should the truly needy suffer because of a few idiots?

Why shove the problem off on someone else, then go on my way thinking what a great thing I've done? Go to the people who are in need, don't force them onto someone else.

Aside: I also support Family Promise, but it only reaches a small percentage of the homeless.

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fallingwhilereading 4 years, 8 months ago

autie How can you say one person can go down the road, or another? Your living in Indian territory.The US, and the States have failed to pay for. In fact the Us, and States are in default for over 150 years. Under treaties signed by the US, and the State, or territory of Kansas. So the truth is you have no legal rights to be here. If your not native, and you believe what you just said? You should listen to own words. Start walking east until you hit the ocean. Than start swimming.

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couranna1 4 years, 8 months ago

there isno good place for them but Hampton Ct is nasty enough and a lot of the free money ones live there already

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autie 4 years, 8 months ago

TOB, is this because some homeless people smell like cheese? Maybe they should give the homeless people a block of government cheese and send them all down K-10 to some new promised land.

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Flap Doodle 4 years, 8 months ago

Sorry there, TOB. You should get yourself a soothing beverage.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 4 years, 8 months ago

I must admit a fondness for Koch Käse...

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

What is your favorite cheese, Uncleandyt?

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uncleandyt 4 years, 8 months ago

I suggest the abscence of a quorum... But, I'm afraid my town has too many people who don't care what happens to strangers. God hates selfish red-necks?

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bd 4 years, 8 months ago

I still think the one way bus ticket out of town plan is the best!

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Donnuts 4 years, 8 months ago

Im a thinkin somebodys cheese slid off theer Kracker.

I like Gouda myself but white american usually goes good on Krackers.

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autie 4 years, 8 months ago

Man, a can of cheese, a sleeve of Ritz crackers and some sliced up summer sausage...horse derves. My one cousins squirts that can cheese on everything...besides it don't need chewed up that much and he ain't got alot teeth left.

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militant 4 years, 8 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

Snap - You just made my tummy turn. Yuck.

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Flap Doodle 4 years, 8 months ago

TOB, is that just for slices or does Squeezy Cheeze also hit you the wrong way?

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ralphralph 4 years, 8 months ago

There are different layers to the homeless population. It is easier to feel compassion for those who find themselves on the street through recent hard luck and who, with a hand up, can probably improve their circumstances, find work and get back in a home of some sort.
It is harder to feel compassion for those who seem to be out there by choice ... I have noticed, though, that a lot of those people really are mentally ill and have fallen through the cracks; many are not able to really make a "choice" at all. Their condition may warrant them some pity, but their behavior rarely does. It's hard to distiinguish, in the "hard-core homeless" bunch, which of them can't do better, and which just won't do better. You would want to help those who can't help themselves, but not enable those who won't help themselves. It's hard to tell which you're dealing with, though.

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Kam_Fong_as_Chin_Ho 4 years, 8 months ago

Amanda, how does a wet shelter without any rules "fix the problem?"

Ellen, since the homeless don't have a permanent address, what difference does it make if the wet shelter is located downtown or elsewhere? Is there someplace they need to be?

Robert, since the homeless don't have jobs to report to, why is there a need for them to be downtown? How would that do the "most good for the most people?" On the contrary, I think "most people" would find it good to not have them downtown.

Ahhh, to be young and naïve again.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

For some reason, American cheese makes me gag. Can't stand the stuff. Maybe it is because of my refined palate.

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Flap Doodle 4 years, 8 months ago

Beware of Velveeta, the Cheese that Never Dies!

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autie 4 years, 8 months ago

Sungrilled? Is that what's meant by going green? How long does that take? Like a week or so? That reminds me, time for little midday snackedge.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 4 years, 8 months ago

T_O_B, I'm making sungrilled cheese sandwiches with Pasteurized Process American Cheese For Use In Domestic Programs and Wonder bread.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 8 months ago

R_I - What are you going to do all day now that Twitter got destroyed?

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 4 years, 8 months ago

Blue, But I do not like Gruyère.
It has a definite yuckiness to it.

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Practicality 4 years, 8 months ago

grammaddy,

Everybody is accountable for their actions. Including the homeless. Most people have compassion for the people who wound up in unfortunate circumstances and are trying to rectify that situation. People seem willing to help those people. It is the drunks/druggies that people are having a hard time supporting.

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Roads_Collar 4 years, 8 months ago

Why not have the shelter close to where those who need it "reside"? There seems to be such a feeling that the further away we can get them, the happier Downtown will be

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Pogo 4 years, 8 months ago

Robert Bickers, Ellen Waters, and Amanda Sprague-Brunk are each more than welcome to offer their homes for these tired a** "homeless" guys who are, for the most part, homeless by choice; have CHOSEN a life-style; and are enabled by a useless social service system in this community.

I challenge each of the three named to start eating lunch at L.I.N.K. for a while to see just what's what amongst "this population". My money says they're not going to do it. It's eye opening when you get in the belly of the beast. Let's you tune into the conversations which are very educational and informative: You'll learn all the in's and out's about skating in life.....whose currently got a bottle of slo gin open; where there is cannabis to smoke and where one can go for all other manner of wonderful daily activities.

The 23rd St. location sure beats keeping this cess pool in the neighborhood it presently is in.....

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grammaddy 4 years, 8 months ago

What does being close to a grade school have to do with anything. Are you aware that St. John's is in close proximity to the downtown area. Have any of those children ever been threatened by homeless people. I really expected a little more compassion toward the homeless in a progressive town such as Lawrence. The steakhouse is right across K-10 from my house. I don't mind having them " in my backyard". In this economy..." there but for the Grace of God"....

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Boston_Corbett 4 years, 8 months ago

With Marion when he attends those Holocaust denial conferences.

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blue73harley 4 years, 8 months ago

"I think an electric motorcycle is a good idea,"

Yikes! You could buy a Yaris and a cheese wheel for the price of one of those.

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Practicality 4 years, 8 months ago

Some of the Rules at the Topeka Rescue Mission:

  1. The use of alcohol by TRM guests is strictly prohibited. Guests suspected of being under the influence of alcohol will be asked to submit to a breath test. A positive reading on a breath test, or refusal to submit to a breath test, will result in being barred from the mission.

  2. Being under the influence of non-prescription drugs is not tolerated at the Mission. Guests suspected of being under the influence of such drugs may be asked to submit to a urine analysis. A positive reading on the analysis, or refusal to submit to the urine analysis, will result in being barred from the mission.

The following rules are particularly serious and violations will result in a “premise” bar. Those barred from the Mission's premises may not come in even for meals, and depending on the nature of the offense, may be arrested for trespassing if seen on Mission grounds.

  1. Smoking is not permitted inside the building.
  2. All weapons and sharp objects must be checked in at front desk.
  3. Verbal abuse of others or the Mission is not tolerated.
  4. Physical abuse of others or the Mission is not tolerated.
  5. Serious or repeated sexual misconduct is not tolerated.
  6. Damage or destruction of others' or Mission property is not tolerated.
  7. Theft of others' or Mission property is not tolerated.
  8. Bringing alcohol or illegal drugs onto Mission property is forbidden.
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Christine Pennewell Davis 4 years, 8 months ago

Way I see it some of these people will be going right by Kennedy elem. I am not sure oarents are going to be to thrilled with that at least down town there are no schools.

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blue73harley 4 years, 8 months ago

It is great for the downtown merchants.

It is going to suck for the Eastsiders. Not counting Crossbones Tavern and the Liquor stores, of course.

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shadowbox66044 4 years, 8 months ago

I think it should be moved to Topeka. Consider it an exchange, for all the thugs they send our way, we'll send them our homeless.

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RoeDapple 4 years, 8 months ago

Big waste of time. They won't go there, too far from Panhandler's Paradise, downtown.

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Donnuts 4 years, 8 months ago

... on the other hand there is a ditch on the other side of Co-op or between the Garage door group next to K-10 that might be a good place. It could be a big party with sleeping bags until the Wakarusa fest comes around again. They could snuggle next to each other like a bunch of Carebears.

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Donnuts 4 years, 8 months ago

Clay has a good idea and I have seen it done in California where there is no one central location. What they did was have a cooperative of churches that changes once a month and there is an application process to become part of the program. I am not sure it is the best idea, but if there was such a program, it might weed those that want help out programs to help them might be more easy to implement. Most big cities still house them in downtown areas though and churches have other things to do than host people living in them, although the crowd living in the situation would be more reputable. No telling though. Oh and look at Amanda's eyes, wow.

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