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One billion is how much Seattle and surrounding area are said to spend on, “coordinating homelessness.” Recently we’ve had a bit of a scandal when the director of King County’s coordinating agency for homelessness was put on paid leave for having a transgendered stripper perform at a meeting called, “ Decolonizing our Collective Work.” Kira Zylstra, now on paid leave, makes about 123,000 a year.

Just thought I’d share the secular side of things, the more liberal mindset and politics that occur when it comes to solving problems and attempting to be charitable towards those who are lost in the shuffle of the system somewhere. Homelessness is a huge problem in this area made all the more prolific from our never ending attempts to “coordinate homelessness.”

Something that doesn’t get a whole lot of media attention is addiction and the rampant meth and heroin epidemic. While a tiny percent of people are homeless due to circumstances, poverty, domestic violence, the vast majority are in the throes of addiction. We can’t really say that too loud on account of the fact that addiction is big business and nobody really wants to confront the perfect confluence of Obamacare, oxycontin prescriptions, and street heroin, meth, brought in to fill the need, mostly by very loose immigration policies.

I’m supposed to say, “people just suffer from mental health problems,” not “Mexican drug cartels were allowed to come in and flood our streets with drugs, taking down the poor who the medical establishment and pharmaceutical companies had already rendered vulnerable.” I’m not supposed to say that too loud, because now that we’ve pretty much created the problem, there are big bucks to be had in pretending to solve it.

Of course, nobody is truly a victim, I mean individuals at any time have the power, the ability to not play this game, to escape the nonsense, to seek healing. You know what really fuels addiction? Blaming everyone else. Refusing to take responsibility for yourself, handing all your power away. That said however, addiction is not so easy to get out of. It tends to takes over people’s mind, body, and spirit, all of which you need in order to get healthy, to find recovery.  That’s a really tough paradox to wrap your brain around, you have been victimized, you are now powerless over whatever enslaves you, and your life has become unmanageable. Seek help, because recovery is possible.

But the rest of us? The rest of us need to know that social problems are not created in a vacuum, that systems are at work, that cause and effect is at play. We need to realize that sin, darkness, evil, that social issues people holler about needing social justice from, are collective problems. The nature of our communities are collective. Collective, as opposed to us all being a bunch of rugged individualists, islands unto ourselves, impervious to the ways of the world, made of Teflon.

The truth is if any one of us had to walk in someone else’s shoes, face the pitfalls they’ve faced, the circumstances, the predators they’ve been targeted by, we may well have done even worse trying to live out our stories.

Somebody, many somebody’s actually, often accuse me of being a social justice warrior, to which I can only reply no, social justice is woefully inadequate. I want to see the entire swamp drained. All of it. Fish rots from the head and trickles down to infect the rest of the body.

That’s a tough message to get across to both liberals and conservatives. Today’s mood?? It would be lovely if the left would stop celebrating transgendered strippers and the right would stop singing Frank Sinatra’s, “I did it my way,” as if everything in life where just a simple matter of making all the right choices.

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