It was with considerable sadness that I read Paul Rudan’s article of Dec. 4, ‘The Violent Side of Rivercity Street Life’. In his article, Mr. Rudan describes, in some detail, a physical altercation between members of our community’s homeless population. He includes names and descriptions. The article is based on events and details related during a courtroom hearing in provincial court.
The sadness of knowing that there are those among us who are without homes, without employment, without the comforts that so many of us enjoy on a daily basis is not new to me. Nor is it new in knowing that many among us endure considerable adversity in our lives, struggle with different kinds of abuse, addictions and mental illness and who may be in crises not of our own choosing. The sadness in reading Mr. Rudan’s article for me came from the author’s decision to share these unfortunate events with the wider community for what seems like very little gain to anyone.
I can see no way in which any of us are better off for reading in our local media a description of conflict between members of our homeless community outside a downtown shelter one evening. The article would seem to be more about the entertainment value of what is going on in court these days than providing any real benefit to readers. Would not Mr. Rudan’s time have been more valuably spent profiling the many compassionate and committed people in our community who work tirelessly to support our most vulnerable?