We were on the 7 a few days ago and four gutterpunk types were complaining about how the city had taken their stuff from camps in Golden Gate Park. One of them, a long-haired fellow with a small backpack and very large pants, went on and on about how he was going to get a grant to put GPS chips in all of his things so he could get them back. Who, exactly, would pay for this grant was unclear. The conversation then descended into an irony-free discussion about restaurants on 6th Street that accept food stamps.
This reminded us of last month, when CW Nevius caused a ruckus and the city started to sweep the homeless out of the park. Nevius went back the other day, and found some things better, and some more-of-the same. A fact-ish article in the Chron takes some numbers from the city, which claims that the sweeps have removed 167 homeless camps, provided services to 164 people, and bussed away 25 people. The usual advocates chimed in, as well. If our bus eavesdropping is any indication, something's definitely going on.
We went running through the park this morning, taking the trail that parallels Fulton and eventually hits Park Presidio. Usually there's a tent or two along that route, visible peeking over the bushes from the trail that parallels the road, but the only human evidence we saw was a discarded pair of jeans and socks. The area around Stanyan and Haight was nearly deserted, despite the nice weather.
So...election-year pandering that will go away soon? Is everyone moving from the Park to the Presidio? The Mayor's office claims that the Park effort will be ongoing. What do you think?
Update: Gavin's changed the parks code, making it possible to be arrested for using obvious camping equipment (tarps, sleeping bags, etc.) even in the daytime.