April 6

Woodruff’s Problem


Have you ever been to a public park and feel uncomfortable with the large amount of homeless individuals? Homeless individuals go to parks as an area to meet people, rest, or other not so good things because of how open and crowded it is. That’s the problem with public parks, like Woodruff park, it is their openness. Parks are naturally open by nature for their nature, which make them an easy target for the unfortunate, but closed off and gated parks don’t have a problem with homeless due to their nature. Woodruff park’s built environment is to be open, inviting people to come and stay with how large it is and its many places to sit and play games. Woodruff park is unique with it many bench, areas to play things, and architecture, but this causes a certain type of individual to come and stay. This type of person is the unfortunate, the homeless. Its is troubled by these unlucky individuals, and these people can blight the area, causing a dangerous problem to all those who go there, but not all of them cause problem. “On any given night, there are approximately 643,067 people experiencing homelessness in America,” and around 25% of those people suffer from mental illness, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression. We must focus our effort on relieving our parks, like Woodruff, of this problem, and the only way to be able to remove this problem would be to help the homeless have a place to rest. There are many ways to go about dealing with these people, though some tend to be less favorable and more violent.

Homeless individuals pose a very small threat or a very great threat to the safety and well-being of everyone around them. Homeless individuals can be driven insane from stress, be strung out or on withdraws from drugs, or really need the money to be able to eat this week. Many homeless individuals uses drugs as an escape, a way to get rid of the stress and pain of life, or may even be forced by other people. There is only very small ways to tell if a homeless individual is effected by drugs. Most drug isolate people or make them act very strange. Drugs like Alcohol will cause slurred speak and impaired walk, but heroin might only cause slight stumbling, weird walking movements and dry mouth. Since it is harder to tell if a person has just used heroin for the first time the homeless can easy be bypassed as clean and not a threat, but since you so easy disregarded them they’ll be able to easy act a you and try to take your things for more drugs. That might sound horrible, but we also need to realize that there is a higher chance that somebody with money is more likely to be a druggie. You have a higher chance of being attacked by a “normal”, middle classed person than a homeless person who some how got drugs.

The homeless gather in areas like parks to be able to socialize, find help, or other things you’d get from being with others. Homeless people don’t have anyone left to turn to and the moment and have to support each other. Parks are used by the homeless as a meeting area to gather with friends and their “family” so they can help each other with food, shelter and even things like talking. Homeless people face many stressful situations, and these situations can drive the homeless to insanity or to a breaking point where they can be a danger to the many people around them. Removing the homeless or restricting them will only move the problem and not solve it, and worsen the problem of their already breaking sanity. To solve a problem that deals with people’s lives as consequences we most think about about every negative and positive with each choice, because the wrong choice could end up with others dying. To solve a problem like this, we need to get these people into homes or something like that. More homeless shelters is a very good start to getting the bulk of the problem, and things like support groups and doctor who can help them will fix almost all the other problems left. The alternatives to letting these people live on the street are more vast than the ocean, but not all are good. A less favorable option is imprisonment, but a favorable option would be more homes for the homeless, they both use tax payer money.


Many things have be used to force homeless out of parks and other areas, like seats that have a bar in the middle so nobody can lie down there or other seats that have spikes on them after a certain time. There are also spikes laid out on the floor on area that would be for a nice place to sit or lay in to sleep. These methods all work, but I don’t think forces the homeless to just leave would be a good way to go about it. The methods often has huge back lashes from the normal public, such as when a living area added spikes outside to deter the homeless. It would be better for us as a society to not add in these deterrents but add in something like areas for the homeless to stay or even just something where the homeless can find a place to go. With all these businesses showing a uncaring face and the police treating these people as criminals the homeless have been made to be jumpy and on guard at all times. We don’t need to be humans that terrify humans, we don’t need to be uncaring, unfeeling demons, we need to be real humans because it’s not like the homeless are hurting anything by sitting or sleeping on a bench in a park.

There is a very large fight happening between the homeless and cop at parks. Parks like Woodruff seem to have less police interference, but other parts and public areas are that lucky for the homeless. Many times the police with use their power to antagonize or bully weaker individuals, like the homeless. Many homeless people will try to gather their stuff and leave when the police tell them to, but to the police this compliance is too stale and they have to amp it so they can have some fun, even if other get hurt for it. There have been pasted studies that show that crimals and cops think the same way, i’m not sure if that is because they have to think to stop crime or if they think that way because they are criminals. They also use their power to get off free, which means as long as we have homeless living on the streets we’ll have police officers who have god complexes trying to use their “powers” to “save” the streets from the “evil” homeless. We need to open our eyes and see that most of the homeless isn’t our problem, our problem is saving humans from humans so we can have better parks and happier lives.

In conclusion, we need to band together to save our parks and to save our fellow human beings. Not all homeless people you should be afraid of, we shouldn’t be afraid of humans, we shouldn’t turn away, we need to hold out our hands and help each other, while we still can. We need to be open in our parks and open in our support. We should not think of the homeless as potential monster, potential druggies or killers. We need to think of them as humans, humans crying out for help. We need to give the homeless a sense that they belong, a community. We can’t just stand idly by and let them think they are humanity’s trash. We can’t keep letting our parks be so openly against other human beings who have lost it all, because if the tables were turned they’d probably be faces with the same situation. The problem isn’t just not wanting them there, it’s a form of discrimination against the homeless. We as humans have grown up to be greed and mean to others, but now it’s the time to change that. It’s time for us to reform and relearn what it means to be human.  We can’t let our protectors of the weak continue to kill that which they should be protecting.

Cited Sources.

“Occupy Atlanta to Confront Police over Treatment of Homeless.” – CBS46 News. N.p., 13 Nov. 2011. Web. 29 Apr. 2016.

“General Homelessness Facts.” Homelessness Facts & Statistics. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2016.

“Commonly Abused Drugs Charts.” Commonly Abused Drugs Charts. N.p., 04 Mar. 2016. Web. 29 Apr. 2016.

Reitzes, Donald C., Crimmins, Timothy J., Yarbrough, Johanna, Parker, Josie. “Social support and social network ties among the homeless in a downtown Atlanta park.” Journal of Community Psychology. 39.3(2011)274-291. Wiley. Web. 29 Apr, 2016.

ROSENBERGER, ROBERT. “How Cities Use Design to Drive Homeless People Away.” The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2016.

Staff, Site. “Homeless Man Shot to Death by Police While ‘illegally Camping’ in the Foothills of NM – Police State USA.” Police State USA. N.p., 23 Mar. 2014. Web. 29 Apr. 2016.