Politics

Tucker Carlson declares war on the homeless over a tree

There are certain crimes in America that happen too frequently—at a rate that outstrips the rate of crimes against Christmas trees. Police shoot and kill dogs that are not a threatthe over 2,100 attacks against the Jewish community in the last ADL report; and of course, the horror of school shootings continues

None of those, however, brings outrage like the arson of a Christmas tree. The Fox host openly demanded to know why the FBI’s director wasn’t dispatching a team to investigate tree arson. (Seriously.) Whether or not this was meant as a shot at the New York Police Department (NYPD). The NYPD captured the suspect in hours, so what exactly was the FBI going to do on a nonfederal charge that was being handled by the local authorities?

Oh, don’t worry about all of that. Certainly, everyone sees this situation the same way. The unhoused are drug-using bad guys who deserve everything they have coming to them! Down with the unhoused! They are all criminals!

Okay, maybe there are a few who disagree. After all, you can lose your home due to a lot of different reasons: loss of a job, divorce, death in the family, having a family unsupportive due to your sexual orientation, or any other reason. Your landlord could raise the rent. Your landlord could notify you of eviction because they are selling the property where you currently reside to new owners. There are lots of ways to become homeless.

Carlson contends all of this is a mess because no one on the left is willing to acknowledge the real problem is mental health. “These people should be in hospitals!” he and his guests declared. That is a nice thought. Mental health funding is critical. It’s too bad that the Republicans in Congress and then-President Donald Trump apparently didn’t believe in it, proposing cutting funding for mental health programs by a whopping 21%. In the 1950s, there were 550,000 beds for mental health care in America. Today, there are less than 38,000; while medication has certainly helped, the rapid reduction in bed space combined with an increase in population still leaves us with not enough space to handle the urgent need. Donald Trump and Republican governors demanded work requirements to receive mental health care, a great way to keep pushing people away and to make sure they don’t get any help.

You’re right, though, Tucker: If you want to think we have a crisis with mental health, I can agree. It’s too bad you and your party want nothing to do with helping those in need.

Arson is bad. Homelessness is also bad. Being overly hot about a problem you have refused to address? That’s just hypocrisy.

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