No More Hippy Celebrations

Posted: June 12, 2011 in Uncategorized

I find myself setting in my “office” (the park) this morning and from nowhere this loud obnoxious yelling begins. This is not yelling like an argument or cheering, no,this is simply yelling for the sake of yelling. Several minutes later, as i was hearing this yelling from nearly a block away, a group of 4 homeless enter the park. After a quick look over i see these are not resident homeless, but in stead a group of the masses of migrant homeless that every year, several times a year, come to Eugene either passing through, or to make it a long term stay. these individuals come to our city on their way through to the annual “Faerie World” Celebration, the Annual ” Emerald Empires Hemp Fest” and the “Oregon Country Fair“. All held near or in Eugene.  As a result of these celebrations our homeless population waxes and wanes with the seasons much like the ocean tides.

Here is what happens during the waxing part of the year. 100’s of new homeless enter our city drawn by the lure of not only the chance to meet others like themselves from around the country, but also by the lure of free drugs. All three of these events are known by those who attend them as wonderfully easy places to score both hallucinogenics and marijuana and to do so without paying. This is fine with me, as what another person does with their bodies in the privacy of their own home or in the presence of like minded individuals is their business and its not my place to nay say them.

However, the results of these celebrations is noticeable on the city of Eugene. First of all is the amount of litter in our parks and streets. Those visiting individuals seem to thing the streets are their personal trash can. Even when actually trash bins are only 10′ away from where they leave their litter. The second is in the sheer amount of beggars you see on the street corners and such. This number goes up drastically. The number of occasions in which you see people using drugs in public is also greatly increased. these visitors seem to believe it is their god given right to get high and or drunk anywhere they wish. They go into the places where others are sleeping and smoke pot or drink and numerous other things that puts the resident homeless at risk of losing their sleeping areas. Those of us who sleep in areas where we are at risk of police harassment try to maintain a low profile to avoid possible conflicts with the authorities. We get to our sleeping areas well after everyone has left and we leave in the morning before anyone gets there. We clean up after ourselves and generally leave the area in the same way we found it. In short, we respect the area n which we sleep. Not the migrant homeless. They do drugs in these areas, get so drunk they puke, leave their trash around in these places, and they generally disrespect those who have been sleeping there and those in authority. One specific situation happened in the area in which i sleep at night. These migrants stayed the night in the area and in the morning when i awoke hey were gone but their trash was not. The sad part of it all? They had to pass a dumpster on their way out of the area. It would have taken no extra effort to throw the trash away, but no, instead i had to throw it away or risk drawing attention to the fact i was there. Granted, there are those who work in the building who know i am thee, but they do not mind as i am clean and respectful, but if garbage begins to be left behind They are not going to tolerate that and i will be out of a sleeping area that is sheltered from both the rain and the wind.

Another thing that happens during this time is the amount of vandalism and noise pollution goes up dramatically. Our park benches get broken, tagging goes up and the new comers seem to believe that yelling is the only way to communicate.

All of this is unacceptable. I am as homeless as these people are, but the difference comes in how much respect each of us give to our surroundings and the people in them.  when you come into our city for one of these events you need to act as though you are a guest in someones house.  Show the city of Eugene the same respect you would show a home you were brought into. If you are incapable of doing this then he only other option is for you to leave. We do not need your addition to the litter, drugs, vandalism or noise. None of this. we do not need you sexually harassing our women, we do not need you being loud and obnoxious, we do not need you undoing all of the effort some of us put into showing society hat not all of the homeless are a problem, we do not need you! If you can not maintain a respectful attitude while you are here leave.

One solution to this issue? The city, county and/or state needs to stop granting permits for these types of celebrations. without them there would be no migration season for those who would come here and disrespect everything this city has to offer. Without these magnets for the stoned, drunk and lost there would be no seasonal migration to our city by these defilers.

The city/county and/or state may argue concerning the loss of revenue were the celebrations stopped, but how many of these individuals actually spend while here? Not many and a good deal of those who do are spending the money they panhandled from those who live here. Those who come and disrespect the area are spending our money in which they begged and doing so in the invisible market place.

Don’t get me wrong as i am not saying all of these migrants are like this. I have net some very respectful members of this group. However, most are not so respectful. I have nothing against this group and do not discriminate against them any more than I discriminate against our resident homeless who behave the same way. as a group, we the homeless need to stand up and be accountable for our actions, behaviors and the way in which we project ourselves. Until we are no one in “normal” society is going to see us a anything other than lazy, “scumbags” who are drowning in drink or oblivious from drugs. If we want to be respected and treated respectfully then we need to begin to act in such a way that proves it. we can not say, “you should not treat us like animals” if we are unwilling to act as humans, and for gads sake, quit trying to convince others you like being homeless. We all know that is not the truth. None of us like being subjected to the harassment and bullying of the local police, sleeping in the rain, not knowing where our next meal will come from, or any of the numerous tings we contend with on a daily basis. So lets try to be honest at least with ourselves.


Eugene Wanderer



A quick update on this issue. Last night I am in my normal sleeping spot. The same place i have slept for the last two months, the place in which i keep clean and drug free. Well, around 11pm a group of out of town kids show up. They begin being loud and unruly, then, light up some pot and begin to smoke it in the sleeping area. It doesn’t take long for someone passing by to call the police and then, because of the disrespect the out of towners have shown for the locals we are all kicked out of thee area.  So now, even though i do not do drugs, am not a loud person and keep the area clean, i have lost a dry place to sleep that is sheltered from the wind as well. Now i will have to find another place to sleep at nights, all because some of the migrant homeless could not act in a respectful manner. After it all, it urns out that this group from California were all minors, one as young as 12 years old.

Hmmmm…….. something to think about.




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