Dear Mr. Davis:
Hello from San Francisco! I just finished reading a copy of your paper sent to our StreetSheet editor. Your paper is great and does similar work to our Street Sheet paper here.
I read that 42% of Cleveland is in poverty. And yet you only get $100 a month for six months in General Assistance (GA)? Out here in San Fransisco, we get $345 a month all year round, free medical care and, if you want to live in a single room occupancy (SRO) hotel, free utilities.
In SF, we believe that when a person is out of work they are merely "in between successes," not to be looked down upon like dogs! The wealthy in your area need to learn that... General Assistance is good for business, because, you see, with our GA. San Francisco never goes broke! As long as there are GA payments for rent and life's necessities, the money is always circulating to not only the poor but to shopkeepers and landlords as well! Everyone gets a piece of the GA pie, whether they realize it or not! As soon as GA gets cut in a community, the WHOLE population suffers, including the rich.
It's amazing to me that I don't hear of your poor people marching down the streets loud and angry, especially in the middle of one of your famous bone-chilling winter seasons! The rich people in your area make you people feel bad for getting $100 a month for six months out of the year?
To your readers I say this: Get off your knees! Stand up for your right to life! It can be helped! Vote! Vote! Vote! Organize! Protest! March! Demonstrate! Don't let the wealthy people's whining and ignorant arguments get you down! The only reason they're rich is because you're poor! They closed your factories down, sent the work to Bolivia and Korea for cheaper wages and left you all hanging with nothing! They owe you!!! They sold out your community for higher profits and yet you let them live in your community as your leaders? They owe you because they have betrayed their own community and sold it down the river along with your family!!! Do the rich in your area really believe that cutting out your money will take care of drug problems and alcohol addiction, teenage pregnancies, abuse, neglect, general poverty and joblessness?
Thank you for your time, Mr. Davis. Please print my letter in your paper. Keep up the good work.
Brian "Ironhorse" Stattman
909 Geary #525
San Francisco, CA 94109
Copyright NEOCH and the Homeless Grapevine published Oct. – Dec. 1995 Issue 12