Bushvilles: Middle-Class Hoovervilles for the 21st Century

Reading a CNN report on a homeless woman in California (video here), I came across this:

Harvey now works part time for $8 an hour, and she draws Social Security to help make ends meet. But she still cannot afford an apartment, and so every night she pulls into a gated parking lot to sleep in her car, along with other women who find themselves in a similar predicament.

There are 12 parking lots across Santa Barbara that have been set up to accommodate the growing middle-class homelessness. These lots are believed to be part of the first program of its kind in the United States, according to organizers.

The lots open at 7 p.m. and close at 7 a.m. and are run by New Beginnings Counseling Center, a homeless outreach organization.

It is illegal for people in California to sleep in their cars on streets. New Beginnings worked with the city to allow the parking lots as a safe place for the homeless to sleep in their vehicles without being harassed by people on the streets or ticketed by police.

Well, we all know that California is usually several steps ahead of the rest of the country in fashions -- cultural, economic, and otherwise. I fully expect we'll be seeing similar programs cropping up wherever the Big Shitpile is hitting the fan, compliments of the economic stewardship of George W. Bush & Co.

Can't afford a home? Well, you can take up residence in your car in a parking lot at night, just like these fine middle-class housewives do.

These transient homes for the once-prosperous deserve their own name, too. I propose we call them Bushvilles.

You all remember Hoovervilles from your history books, don't you?

They were products of an eerily similar economic policy: favor the wealthy, soak the poor, and screw the middle, then let God sort it out:

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.