According to the Kalamazoo Gazette, a group of homeless people is demanding that they be allowed to use private property, even if the owners don't want them there. The Kalamazoo Homeless Action Nation (KHAN) is demanding that the Kalamazoo City Commission pass an ordinance forcing business owners to allow homeless people to stay in their businesses.
Homeless people aren't taking this issue lying down, either. They're threatening to do what homeless people do best--sit around. "KHAN spokesperson Adriana Rosas said the group may protest lack of action on the ordinance by spending the night of March 31, National Night Out for the Homeless, on public property near commissioners' homes. ... `We will be a constant thorn in your side until you pass this ordinance,' one shelter resident told commissioners. `Play games with the homeless, and God's going to play games with you.'" Wow, I can't imagine why anyone wouldn't want these people on their property.
Commissioner Mary Balkema is also mentioned in the article: "Commissioners David Anderson, who chaired a subcommittee reviewing the proposed ordinance, and Mary Balkema, who sits on the governing board of the Kalamazoo Gospel Mission, took issue with the criticism.
`To call the Mission a prison is offensive,' Balkema said, referring to charges by some human-rights-ordinance advocates.
`Many, many cities have problems with homeless people that are worse than Kalamazoo,' Anderson said. `We do have a system on the backs of caring, generous people here so that nobody has to go hungry or sleep outside if they don't choose to.'"
"`We're going to do anything necessary within the law to get this ordinance passed,' said Lori Anne Fuller, a KHAN member who is homeless." Anything, apparently, except GET A JOB. These people have time for political activism, but they don't have time for gainful employment?
Even liberals Don Cooney and Lee Kirk point out that the proposed initiative is unenforceable.
The "Kalamazoo Homeless Action Network" is a name that raises all sorts of comedic possibilities.
UPDATE: Here is more information on the Kalamazoo Gospel Mission.