Late Night Snack: Arrested in Orlando for Feeding the Homeless

Jul 02 2011 Published by under Uncategorized

Food Not Bombs activists get arrested for feeding the homeless, chanting “Food is a right, not a privilege”.

Twice a week, these activists gather in the park to feed the homeless and every time, they are arrested. “3 more activists arrested for breaking the group feeding ordinance in Orlando. This makes 15 total arrests in the past 2 weeks.” What in the heck is going on with this?

Here’s the video courtesy of OrlandoCopWatch :

Since when is it illegal to feed the homeless, and if it is, why? Well, it turns out that Orlando has a city ordinance that prohibits sharing food with large groups of people. Seriously. And it costs thousands to arrest these food activists, whose motto is “Food Not Bombs”.

The Orland Sentinel

Orlando police arrested five more activists from behind a makeshift buffet table at Lake Eola Park on Wednesday evening, bringing to a dozen the number charged in the past week with violating city restrictions on feeding the homeless.

The members of the group Food Not Bombs were ladling out corn on the cob, rice, beans and watermelon to about 35 people when they were handcuffed. About two dozen activists and homeless people booed and chanted “Food is a right, not a privilege” as they were loaded into a waiting police van.

They were violating a controversial city ordinance that prohibits sharing food with large groups in a downtown city park more than twice a year. Food Not Bombs has been fighting the ordinance but lost a legal appeal in April, clearing the way for the city to begin enforcement.

When it comes to fighting whether or not food is a right, Florida is sinking to a new low. They waste all of this money prosecuting these folks ($3,000 per person according to the activists) but they have no money for pensions or unemployment. What did they think was going to happen? Hey, Governor Scott, there are only going to be MORE homeless under your rule so you better at least allow the humanitarians to feed them out of their own pockets.

The mayor of Orlando is calling the activists “food terrorists” and says the activists are seeking attention more than wanting to feed people. So what if they are? Why would anyone want to demonize people who are feeding the homeless? I sense another pristine park for the “right kinds of people” issue here, but I’m not from Florida. I’m originally from Michigan, where we give away public parks to private corporations run by Republican elected officials.

And here I thought the Republicans wanted the private sector to take over, as in charity like these activists are engaging in, but apparently not. Our city parks are not to be used to feed the unwashed. City parks, are of course, best used as golf outings for Whirlpool executives (thank you, Governor Snyder) rather than the little people (aka: tax payers). So now we pay for their golf courses and they tell us that we can’t feed the folks they shoved into the streets in their white bread parks.


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