This, like the last post, is not a joke (emphasis added):
Hundreds of Denver’s homeless could be cooling their heels in a movie theater or museum while the Democratic National Convention is in town next month.
The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless plans to get 500 movie tickets as well as passes to the Denver Zoo, Denver Museum of Nature and Science and other cultural facilities for the people it helps.
“We’re trying to let folks know what activities are planned, and what other places they’ll be able to go without being harassed,” Parvensky said.
A two-day voter registration drive is also planned at shelters and health clinics to ensure that metro area homeless people have access to the polls in November.
Backers of the plan say it’s a more sanitary and humane way to take care of people.
But not everyone buys it.
“It just sounds like another way to get rid of them,” said Kayne Coy, 17, who volunteers feeding the homeless twice a week at Civic Center Park through the Food Not Bombs organization.
As for the convention, Coy said: “I’ve heard rumors that all the homeless people are going to be sent away to Aurora or somewhere else.”
Parvensky vigorously denied that there will any attempt to hide the homeless during convention, which runs Aug. 25-28.
Tight security around the Pepsi Center means some homeless people will get booted out of their regular camps along the South Platte River. Then, there’s the protests and parades.
“A person who typically sits under a tree in a park that is now occupied by 1,000 protesters won’t have the peace and quiet they’re desiring,” Parvensky said. “Particularly those with mental illness can’t cope with crowds.”
“Our concern going forward is that the city doesn’t control everything – the Secret Service plays a role,” he said. “We don’t know what will happen if protests get out of control and people get caught up in something they didn’t intend to.”
The first comment on the article really says it:
“What a joke. Why is this happening for just the week of the convention? If this organization was serious, they would have already been doing this.”
Indeed. Regardless of intention, this just seems like a horrendous PR move, no matter what angle you try to approach it from.
Big convention? Let’s clean up this town. Oh, and let’s try to get some of those people off the streets…but, you know – it’s for their own good… So they aren’t bothered by the convention… What interest would they have in a political convention anyway…? Oh, but let’s make sure they’re registered to vote…
Also, as a little side, the last time I was asked if I was registered to vote, the exchange went exactly like this (Steve can back me up on this one…):
“Hey, we’re trying to get Bush out of office. Who are you voting for?”