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Readers passionate on homeless influx

DJ Becker/The Madera Tribune

A group of five or six shopping carts filled with neatly folded blankets, clothing and other belongings, lined up along the river trail near Schnoor Avenue recently.


A Tribune article about concern among northeast Madera residents over an increase in homeless sparked heavy discussion among readers. Excerpts are below.

  • “Kym Smith Salter” complained to the city about nearby homeless. She wrote, “Thankfully they moved on because, if they had not, the zoning department would have had to wait until this Saturday! Did you know that there are approximately 50 or so cities in the state that have ordinances where they can give 24 hours of notice? Madera had to post signs, give notice, and so on. Hey Madera City, let’s get an ordinance together so in the future this lengthy process can be expedited. Rather be pro-active than reactive!”

  • “April Molina” wrote, “It’s about stinking time this made the papers! I’ve been living in this neighborhood for 18 years and it’s gotten MUCH worse! I told that woman with the dogs there were leash laws and I’d shoot them myself if I saw them on my property again! Ugh! Sick sick sick to death of the drugs and trash! It’s not just the city! The county supervisor for this area is completely clueless as to what is going on in this area! I’m unimpressed and will absolutely be voting him out next term! They come by people’s homes asking for money, or other things. We have ALWAYS offered a ride to the shelter. We have yet to have ONE person take us up on the offer for true help. The answer we always get is, ‘No, thanks. They have too many rules.’”

  • “Lisa Johnston Moser” wrote, “I had to quit using the car wash at the 76. My daughter was with me and there was a homeless man urinating in there. And it’s amazing how they can wear new designer jeans but have to live there. Madera officials, you need to do something about this. We have a lot of children in this area. … If the city can’t come up with a solution, at least put a dumpster in the area so they can use it instead of trashing it up.”

  • “Susan Stjerne” wrote, “Have you been at the skate and dog park lately? It’s really bad under that overpass. I’ve stopped going to the dog park because of the homeless lazy men that lay around in the grass all day. It’s gotten out of control … If enough of the citizens of Madera city and county band together start voting out our so called leaders maybe then we can get something done.”

  • “Donald Brown” wrote, “Madera PD cited the wave runner riders. Why not cite the homeless people trespassing too?”

  • “Joel Martinez” wrote, “It’s pretty sad actually. I grew up on Sierra Street, a few blocks away. I thought I would only see that in countries we pulled into while on deployments. I never thought my hometown would resemble such a place; maybe I just don’t want to accept it. I still visit that area because it reminds me of my childhood. I just do it with a little more awareness. Nobody wakes up in the morning with the intention to fail. It’s sad.”

  • “Rafaela Ruiz” wrote, “I quit going to the 76 because the homeless kept harassing me for money. One lady tried to sell me her cup of coffee that she got for free and another man told me that he needed money because he just got out of jail and proceeded to tell me I had a nice smile. Yes, it’s a nervous smile. I’ve seen the homeless use the nearby canals to wash their clothes and I think, why are we allowing this? I wonder, why isn’t the city stepping in to help solve this obvious problem. Are we saying as a community this is OK and allow homeless to roam the city, litter, and burn buildings down?”

  • “Arielle Rodriguez” wrote, “Every morning my parents get a nice view of them from across the Schnoor bridge. They’re right, the city kicks em out and by the next day you couldn’t even tell.”

  • “Chris Hippie Rippee” wrote, “Let’s talk about the river and how much trash gets left behind; also all the crap that’s floating down the river. Before we had the water it wasn’t a problem.”

  • “Tami Gaither Law” wrote, “As you go north on Schnoor and cross the bridge by Lowe’s, it always smells like something is dead.”

  • “Stephen Soto” wrote, “It’s that meth. It’s bad, messing everybody up.”

  • “Cynthia Angel Perez” wrote, “ ‘They look like the walking dead,’ ‘They’re filthy,’ ‘They use drugs.’ Are you people serious? How dare Madera Tribune print those obnoxious remarks! You people think that all homeless people are there because they chose to be? How dare you make assumptions like that! It is still not a crime to be poor! If half of you who are bad mouthing them would put your heads together to find a solution to this problem, then maybe there wouldn’t be a homeless problem! You wait to watch and see what the government is going to do and you already know they take for themselves! It’s up to the community to help each other! Remember the roof you live under isn’t guaranteed. You might be them one day! Such horrible people!”

  • “Jim Curry” wrote, “Just because they are homeless does NOT make them bad people … Just because they’re homeless doesn’t make them any less important than you and I. God commands us to love everyone. … Rather than complain or be afraid, reach out and see if you can help in any way. We have a Rescue Mission here at 1305 Clinton right behind (Rancho) San Miguel Shopping Center. Point them in their direction. Invite them to church. Take them some old clothing, some food, some water, health beauty aids, such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, etc.”

  • “April Molina” wrote, “I live where they live. They walk down my street, get their drugs and go back to get high. My husband and I have offered every single one of them a ride to the homeless shelter so they can get into the program and get off their addiction. Every single one of them has said, ‘No, they have too many rules and you have to be sober.’ You don’t know what you’re talking about. … The Bible actually says, ‘If a man will not work, nor shall he eat.’ 1 Thessalonians 3:10”

  • “Kate Eddy Larose” wrote, “I am deeply saddened that, (1) the reporter thought it was okay to write what he/she did and more importantly, (2) that the editorial team thought it was appropriate to be published. Shame on you, The Madera Tribune! Did you even think to get a quote from someone living in the encampment? Because you know what, I’ll bet they’re also pretty darn concerned about being homeless! To have a story run along the lines of ‘self-centered people with homes find people who are homeless gross and annoying’ is abhorrent.”

  • “Silvia Neri” wrote, “We have the same problem in Fresno! It’s ridiculous!”

  • “Denise Jones” wrote, “I’ve never been ashamed of Fresno until last couple of years. I’ve been told that the responsibility of these people got turned over to police who are already stretched thin. Fresno is filthy. Store owners have to deal with these people. They steal grocery carts, which makes them even more mobile. I’m at a loss what to do. Oh, and they use people’s lawn hoses in the middle of the night and leave them running and then homeowner is stuck with the bill. It’s out of control.”

  • “Liz Noland” wrote, “It’s all over California.”


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