The documentary that I chose to watch was “Under the Bridge: The Criminalization of Homelessness.” Some of the key points in the document were that many of the homeless believed it was hard to get jobs, housing, or any federal benefits with a criminal background. Issues have sparked that relate to discrimination and inequality. In Indianapolis, Indiana the city never took a role on helping the homeless, there weren’t many shelters for them to go to. There was one that was called, Wheeler Mission Ministries where many of the homeless had stated it was worse than prison and would rather be in jail than in there. To be accepted you had to show an ID, and if you did not have an ID, they would personally fingerprint you to get an identification and give them sources on where you can get a valid ID. They were limited to 10 dasy a month; but were able to stay more if they met their criteria which they had said was fairly easy by passing a drug test and proving they are looking for work. Homeless couples were not able to stay there, even if they were pregnant or had a child unless they were married. Media began to play a role at the Davison street camp when the government and police were trying to remove the homeless. If they did not move out in a week they would be getting charged with a federal offense and arrested.
This documentary presented a contradiction because people do not understand why they are homeless or why some choose to be homeless. Many are unable to get a house, or a job because they were previously convicted and struggle to meet the standard criteria to get a well-paying job and housing. The media also showed this because they were reporting on the camp in a negative manner to the world when there are many positives within the community. Maurice, who was the one in charge of this camp got many interviews from reporters, but it comments hardly ever made it on air. The media also made reports of how businesses have made complaints about rats, rodents, trash, and debris and people using the area as an open toilet and how there is sympathy and relief about the move. When Joel Miller was interviewed, he said, “I would like to know more about Davison Street, but my guess is that there is a donor who has complained about the area and they won’t want to invest until the problem is solved.” Tina Lagrotte, who is the owner of Milano Inn Restaurant owns many properties along the railroad side.” When the question was asked if they were wanting to build on the property where the camp is, investors were very concerned about the camp and are looking to build an apartment property there.
The homeless are a major concern all over the world today, and many people do not have a solution for it, nor do they want to take the steps to help people get off the streets and help them start a life. I have come to the realization that there are people who do prefer being homeless in order to be a positive figure to those who are. When people look at the homeless, they tend to just look the other way. There are also a lot of homeless people who suffer with drug addiction, bipolar disorder, depression, schizophrenia and don’t have the sources to get the help that they need simply because they do not have the sources to do so. Yes, there are shelters but they come with many rules and regulations that many are unable to commit to.
People should watch this documentary because it gives you an inside look at a community where they call each other a family. They are the only people that they have, the only ones that understand. Most did not choose to be homeless, but there was no other alternative for them because none was given to them. It will give you the thought, “why are we spending millions of dollars on nonsense when there are people struggling to survive on the streets.”