On the same day as my last post, the L.A. Times featured an article about Costa Mesa’s mayor and his “mission” to close down the city’s soup kitchen and other organizations that provide clothing, groceries, after school tutoring, health care and other services. Comparing the charities to nightclubs, the mayor called them a nuisance to the surrounding neighborhoods. I don’t often get political in my posts, but this really bothered me. One of the things that I love about my city is its diversity. We could close down the services that provide for the homeless and financially strapped in our cities who are in need and it will look liked we “fixed” the problem. But the reality is that we will have just pushed the problem onto someone else, some other city who will take care of the needs of these individuals. The director of Someone Cares Soup Kitchen here in Costa Mesa said that a survey last year found that 86% of the soup kitchen’s patrons are from Costa Mesa, and 40% were low-income seniors. I thought the mayor was supposed to look after the well being of all of its residents. When you represent the city, you represent the entire city, not just the wealthy, not just the working. Mayor Bever represents Costa Mesa, a city that spans the poorest to the super wealthy, the employed and unemployed, and those with and without homes. However, Mayor Bever wants to shut the doors on organizations that have been around for 25 years and whose mission is to serve those in need. And yet, the mayor has never visited the soup kitchen. I think it would be much more difficult to say if we managed to put this soup kitchen out of business it would solve some of our homeless issues in this city if he saw the faces of individuals, heard the stories of how they fell on hard times, and sat down and had a meal with neighbors from different walks of life.
To read the L.A. Times article click here: