Blog

Tonight! Save Akron's Tent City

Please come support our homeless community for this historic moment in Akron’s history:
The Final City Council Hearing For The Fate Of Our Tent City
Monday, September 10, 2018 at 7pm
Akron Municipal Building
166 S High St, Akron, Ohio 44308
This is the most incredible journey I’ve ever experienced.
I came to this homeless work as a person who had all the stereotypes so many of us had.
I believed the homeless were all drug-addicted, lazy people that were too intellectually slow to dig themselves out of the hole they fell into.
As you know, every one of those stereotypes are wrong. College graduates are homeless. People who have never touched a single drug are homeless. Veterans are homeless. Pregnant moms are homeless. The homeless aren’t a cyst on the foot of society.
The homeless are us!
The homeless are our brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, moms and dads. And sometimes they literally become us.
Separating us from them is just a convenient way to try to make us feel better that we won’t someday need to live in a tent while we get back on our feet.
That someday we won’t need to turn to a stranger and ask for a meal and a blanket. (I see medical tragedies every week that crush family finances. We do not live in a country with as many safety nets as we’d like to think.)
But those aren’t the stereotypes that have made the most profound impact on my life.
It’s the stereotypes I carried around of YOU!
We all see the news. Random murders. Countless drug overdoses. The rich getting richer.
Based on what we read and see on TV we are living in a desolate, uncaring desert of hate and anger.
It’s you that have restored my faith in humanity.
I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that humanity is inherently good. I don’t need to read Rousseau or any other philosopher to understand this.
I see it in the food you bring, the clothes you bring, the money you bring. The sheer outpouring of love and support you bring.
Humanity is good.
In fact, not only have I come to understand that humanity is good, I now know that it is US, the people, that are the true leaders of America. The actual leaders plod reluctantly behind the bold paths we carve out for them.
The “leaders” of America don’t want things to change. That risks money and their very own livelihood.
Leadership IS change. Leadership requires doing the hard thing. Leadership requires taking a stand about something no one else has dared take a stand on before.
The only people I see doing that kind of work is YOU. The everyday, common American. You are the people showing the leaders what actual leadership looks like.
I can’t thank you enough for not only how you have rallied around the homeless. But for how inspired you have made me in humanity.
Thank you!
With that, I would love for you to come to our final presentation to the city tonight. Here are the details:
Monday, September 10, 2018 at 7pm
Akron Municipal Building
166 S High St, Akron, Ohio 44308
We got a resounding NO from the city’s planning department.
We got a resounding NO from the city’s planning commission.
And, quite frankly, I would be shocked to get anything different from our City Council.
But that’s not important.
As of this moment 371 of you have filled out THIS FORM to express your support for our tent city. These responses were individually emailed to all of City Council.
We have a team of attorneys flying in right now from DC and Austin Texas to make their presence known for the first time.
We have a bus coming to transport our residents to city hall for tonight’s hearing.
Caterers have been paid for by supporters to give our residents and supporters a meal before the hearing. (You are welcome to come to this if you’d like. The bus leaves 15 Broad Street at 6.)
America is converging on Akron to say: LET THE PEOPLE CARE FOR THE HOMELESS.
We cannot focus on the negative of what might be. We must keep our spirits and minds on what CAN be. We must be the physical manifestation of our better selves.
We cannot allow ourselves to get mired in pessimism and negativity. We must walk in belief and hope and love.
As we lead by example the actual leaders will, sooner or later, have no choice but to file in behind us and do the right thing.
Don’t be afraid of any outcome tonight. In fact, there may not even be a vote tonight.
This is not done. This is not over. No matter what leaders decide today we will continue to be the moral leaders and stewards for the homeless tomorrow and the day after.
We will not quit until the powers that be wake up and understand that there are Akron citizens living stranded on the streets of our city and all we ask is to allow the people to care for the least among us.
See you tonight!
 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *