Very odd day today. I went to the Asheville-Buncombe Coalition for the Homeless meeting, and that went well. I met with a police officer and my housing coordinator (on different issues) after the meeting. I went to the Homeless Initiative’s Housing Workgroup meeting, and only three people showed up so we talked for a while and then went on about our business. The whole day seemed to go downhill from here. I went over the Myra’s to finish setting up her DSL line. She was drunk and passed out on her bed, so nothing there. I talked to my former landlord, Mr. Parker. I went to the park to talk to people, and none of my better friends were there. I went to the county courthouse to try to get my ticket dismissed… I got sent from one floor to another to another, and everyone kept telling me what they COULDN’T do, nobody told me what they could. The people who could change my court date (due to my foot surgery, see below) couldn’t because their computers were down. Only a DA could dismiss the ticket, and all of them were in court and could not be disturbed. Just got passed from room to room, we can’t do this, we can’t do that. I gave up and went to catch the bus. I sat down at a clearly marked bus stop WITH A BENCH, and when the bus came, he waved at me to say that was no longer a bus stop, I had to go another block. I hate arguing with drivers, I hate arguing altogether for that matter.
I tried to go to Big Lots to see what kind of things they had gotten in. They would not let me in unless I left my backpack with them. Of course, company regulations made it clear that they would not be responsible for it. I told them that they obviously did not want my business. A few other downers happened, like missing the next bus and walking the rest of the way home.
OK, that’s the second time in 3 days I’ve been turned away from a store for having my backpack. I can see some of their issue, but not all of it. This is still a free country, based on INDIVIDUAL freedoms, not corporate freedoms. (OK, I’ve been smoking time-weed again… nobody still believes that, but I cling to it anyhow.)
Let’s do the demographics. OK, there are terrorists with explosives that are sometimes smuggled in backpacks. There are teenagers who use backpacks to steal things (not to mention women with purses who do the same thing, but nobody has banned purses). Let’s look at the demographics. None of the above are 55 years old and white males. How many middle-aged white males have been caught using a backpack either to steal or carry a bomb? How many? Now, what about Western North Carolina, still supposed to be in the Friendly South (at least for middle-aged white males). How about asking a question or two… like, notice that I’m a member of the city’s Citizen’s Police Advisory Committee.
Stores are complaining bitterly about their sales drooping. They should look at themselves for the answer to that. They’re not using anything close to good sense in dealing with their potential customers.