California, one of the most stunning places in the United States, graced to the east with majestic mountains and to the west with sandy beaches and the Pacific ocean. A beautiful scenic landscape, until you hit the major metropolitan areas. Los Angeles, San Francisco, and now Orange county have been plagued with sprawling homeless encampments. While government officials have downplayed this humanitarian emergency laying blame on gentrification, the real culprit in this scenario is the number of drug addicted individuals moving into the area.
According to the US Housing and Urban development more than 50% of the homeless are suffering from drug addiction, mental health problems or a combination of both. The problems associated with these homeless encampments is not merely an issue of aesthetics but of the associated health risks that have arisen in their wake. Medieval diseases such as Typhus have infected these homeless encampments as well as people working in the surrounding areas. It is suspected that there could be cases of the Bubonic Plague hidden among the population due to the high rat infestation and the due to the fact that the bacteria Yersenia Pestis, responsible for causing Bubonic plague, has not been eradicated and is found in fleas which are carried by rats.
The rise in the homeless population can be traced to a little know measure known as Prop 47 the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act. Proposed in 2014 by Presidential candidate Kamala Harris, while acting in the capacity of state attorney general. The proposition reduced felony drug possession and felony theft to misdemeanors in an attempt to lower the over-crowding of prisons.
In the aftermath of passing Prop 47, as reported by National Review, "The personal use of illegal drugs was also reclassified to a misdemeanor. Although the intent may have been kind (it’s cruel to punish people for having an addiction) and practical (they’ll emerge from prison hardened, and a felony on their record makes it more difficult to reintegrate into society), the downstream impact on the community at large has been disastrous. In San Francisco, for example, shooting up in public is commonplace, whether it’s on the steps of City Hall, in front of a supermarket, or at the entrance to a children’s playground." Prop 47 has paved the way for drug dealers and cartel members to gain access to a fertile ground of addicts. According to Courthouse News, the Sinaloa Cartel is the leading player in a poly-drug trade that has largely shifted south of the border. Cartels produce and distribute massive quantities of meth into the U.S. through a route that starts in Southern California, moves northwards and then hooks to the east and into the heartland.
The unintended consequences of virtue signaling by Prop 47 have had long lasting and far reaching devastation for the state. While homeless people make their encampments in high property value areas, drug addicts shooting up in front of children, people defecating on the streets and infectious diseases are on the rise, politicians are scratching their heads about finding affordable housing. Perhaps they should reconsider policies that created this crisis in the first place.