Well, it seems at least some of you made those calls to our city government. I decided to brave downtown to grab a quick bite before heading out on other duties, not something I’d normally do. To my happy surprise, what did I see?
Smack dab in Kesey Square.
Yes, I was pleasantly surprised but, being a little cynical, I expected it was a community information kind of thing. I walked up and asked a couple of questions about what they were doing. To my surprise, this is not a one time thing,
“We’ve had a lot of community and business owner feedback about the downtown area and it’s clear that our public spaces are not being utilized the way they were intended. We’re here to help take these areas back and we’ll be here till the weather turns.”
Now you’re talking. This is at least a start. I was curious how far this plan went and it was explained to me’
“If this location works the way we hope, we’ll begin adding locations to our efforts.”
Bravo Eugene Police Department. Now lets see if the City has the will to hold the line when the push back comes. On the way back to my office I passed two young people who often sleep in the park explaining to what appeared to be a seasoned traveller friend that the police were kicking people out of the park, taking their dogs, not even letting them sleep there!
Eugene’s hugely vocal activist minority is bound to weigh in. My opinion? Dear City Goverment and all your entities: Don’t give in. Don’t flinch, don’t equivocate, don’t be mealy mouthed politicians. Serve the people who elected you and pay your salaries. Support the police department, support this effort to reclaim the citie’s public spaces. The city will be better for it, and so will your approval ratings.
That goes for all of us in the community. I’m going to ask you again to call the Eugene Police Department, The City Council, The City Manager and the Mayor, but this time, I want you to let them know you support this effort downtown and support it being extended to every location in the city where our public spaces have been overrun. This is working, don’t stop now. We won’t.
Madam Mayor, Mr. City Manager, City Council Members – don’t over do it. Support Occupy Medical and their efforts. Continue to work to find solutions that work for both our community and the homeless and displaced populations here in Eugene. It’s far more important than the color of the carpet in the new City Hall.