COMMENTARY | There is an organization called Food Not Bombs that has been making the news lately. The reason that they are making the news is controversial to say the least. Food Not Bombs has been feeding the homeless in major cities across America. These cities have all put bans on feeding the homeless in their cities.
Food Not Bomb members have been getting arrested for feeding the homeless. There are approximately 67,000 homeless veterans, 13 percent of the homeless population is disabled, and a number of children are also homeless (National Coalition for Homeless Veterans and National Coalition for the Homeless). Yet it is illegal in major cities such as Orlando, Philadelphia, Houston, Dallas, Las Vegas, and New York City to feed the homeless.
There are approximately 67,000 United States veterans homeless throughout America ( National Coalition for Homeless Veterans). These men and women were brave enough to fight for our freedom and we repay them by denying them food. These men and women have fought in wars from Vietnam all the way through to Iraq and Afghanistan and we deny them food. We should be giving these men and women housing, food, and cloths for free until they get back on their feet.
Our homeless population of disabled people is 13 percent. These people are entitled to food and many are homeless because they are not able to work and the government does not give them enough money to live on. I’m not sure when these cities forgot that disabled people are entitled to public accommodations.
There are also a number of homeless minors on the streets as well. These minors live with their families on the street or unaccompanied. Children are our future or at least that was the way it was supposed to be. This means that we should be feeding them to ensure that they are able to grow up and be strong leaders of tomorrow.
America is losing track of what has made this country great. We used to take care of our own, but not anymore. This is case in a lot of major cities throughout the United States anyways. Food Not Bombs has filed a lawsuit for violation of their Freedom of Speech, and Peaceful assembly (Food Not Bombs). This case is being fought on these First Amendment issues.
The real issue here is not a First Amendment issue in and of itself. It is more of an issue of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 Title II Sections 201, 202, and 203 (Civil Rights ACT OF 1964). The Civil Rights Act of 1964 Title II Section 202 states that no person shall be segregated based upon race, color, religion, or national origin (Civil Rights ACT OF 1964).
It is reasonable to believe that the police and these cities are separating the homeless. The homeless come in all races, color, religion, and national origins. The homeless populations are not allowed to be feed in the park or by citizens of the community without the people feeding them getting arrested. This also denies the homeless the opportunity to eat at a fast food place, or restaurant without paying for it themselves. This is the reason that this needs to be fought on a Civil Rights level.
This case needs to be separated from a First Amendment case, and raised as Civil Rights Act of 1964 Act Title II case. This case should be filed under Title II as a violation for public accommodations. This will also raise the bar for the courts to recognize what is going on is illegal and has been since 1964.