Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Danger/Crime Running Free & Fearless in SD

Now just because I happen to be a local News Reporter/ Investigative Journalist, Editor,and News Video/Photographer for the Popular Hobo News & Entertainment blog thing doesn't mean that I've lost my objectivity, my balanced perspective nor have my political views been reconfigured somehow in order to attract more readers to this place.  However, it seems that over this past month, despite my
most diligent (and exceedingly sober) safety-conscience stream of decision making and movements around San Diego, I've seen and/or have been impacted by more acts of violent street crime than ever before.

As you may recall, on March 7th while updating this blog at Starbucks ( 2899 University Ave.) in North Park, my Macbook was snatched out from under my fingertips as I sat outside the coffee shop  at 7ish pm with pedestrians everywhere around me. I'm still upset by that incident and I'm a bit hyper-afraid as well (which, fyi, is two steps below "shit less" on the official fear scale).

After that, I was going to leave this little dumpy apartment here in North Park where I've been staying
with my friend, Uncle Bill. Its been over three weeks since I came here to stay with Uncle Bill for a "few days". I'd felt lucky to be invited to stay here and get out of Mira Mesa for a while after having a nasty confrontation with Mira Mesa's official venomous reptile, hobo Chris White. Any encounter I have with that insane idiot can explode into violence because that's the only thing he thinks about and engages in when he's not in jail. When he made it clear to David Mick and I that he's going to kill me while I'm asleep somewhere around MM, I wasted no time in rounding up a few tools of self protection/defense against an attack. But as you can imagine, after that, I was not sleeping very well
and I was on guard constantly. Plus its very depressing to feel like you're near future is going to be when either you die from stab wounds or you're gonna go to prison because you successfully stopped some would-be killer from making good on his threat.

The more I think about the mortal danger/risks of sleeping outside in Mira Mesa vs. the prevailing crime wave that's alive and kicking my a$$ in North Park while I stay in Uncle Bill's insane apartment, the more inept and vulnerable I feel. That's not good.

Just call 911,you say? Sure its good to them if you have 20 minutes or so advanced notice of being attacked. But a cel phone and the threat of the police arriving is no deterrent to any real boogieman.
The ideal protection a person can hope for in most cases are attentive/alert people nearby you. Preferably a few young guys who can run fast and who will jump to your aid if you're in trouble.
I'm that kind of guy, and I'll always jump into a situation and help the victim but when I'm the victim,
it seems that cowardice is everywhere.

Meanwhile, while I was holed up inside the apt. hiding under my sleeping bag  and sulking over the loss of my Macbook and software and feeling like another boogieman may try and snatch more of my vital and expensive devices/stuff, Uncle Bill walked across the street to a crappy little dive bar the other night and got robbed by the bouncer/employee there!!No shit. He was ordering a beer and had his $ out in his hand and some big thug/goon simply reached over his shoulder and snatched it out of his hand.

Sure Uncle Bill called the po-leece and they got there in a few seconds, but they did nothing.
After all ,what could they do? The bouncer denied it and none of the 6 or 8 patrons at the bar
claimed to see or know anything. Bill's lucky he only lost $35.

To make matters worse, his robbery prompted a discussion between us. Apparently, Uncle Bill has been giving cash to a couple of the regulars at that bar whom happen to be homeless! That means they may know where Bill lives and it wouldn't surprise me if Bill's told them that I'm staying at his place with my laptop and bunch of other electronics crap. (He doesn't realize that some hobos are NASTY CRIMINAL THIEVES.)

These recent incidents have led me to consider buying some sort of safety protection gear.
Firearms are not a likely choice for a hobo but there are other things available that I'm considering.
If I continue to stay here at Uncle Bills crime wave flophouse/apartment, some serious door locks are in order and maybe some surveillance cameras as well. Otherwise, I feel like I need some sort or personal safety device(s). A few hand grenades would do the job but they're not sold in stores.
A nice professional nail gun would be intimidating but not very feasible for riding the bus with.
A marine distress flare gun would be just lovely.You just shoot the boogieman in the ass with a
flare as he runs off with your shit and follow the trail of smoke and bright embers of pretty red twinkle lights shooting out of his asshole for 3 minutes!

Other options include Bear Spray (a potent pepper spray for use against bears), mace (military tear gas), and less exotic tools like box cutters. butcher knives, hatchets and crowbars etc. One thing I do
also instinctively whenever I'm sensing danger nearby, is stop along where ever I'm walking and look for one or two big rocks that are small enough to fit inside my coat pocket and heavy enough to stop some big thug in a heartbeat if I'm attacked. I pulled one out of my pocket one time  and that was enough to stop a would be attacker from getting near me. Its also wise to yell and holler for help if things are getting real dangerous close by. Yell for someone/anyone to call 911 and they will...usually.

I hate the very thought of having to defend myself against a thieve or an assailant with a weapon of some sort especially the kind that make messes and are most likely to result in some one's death or severe permanent injury. What I hate even more is the uncertainty about the dangerous elements that I'm trying to defend against. Its foolish to sit around with a brick in one hand and a knife in the other and think that you're impervious from violent criminals.The fact is (from my own experiences)          
 that, the biggest advantage the attacker has over his victim is the element of surprise. In order for you to fend off an attack or thwart a robbery, you almost need to anticipate it and have your weapon/ protection ready to use before he strikes.That means that you've gotta walk around all day and night everywhere you go wound up like a spring, looking around 360ยบ profiling everyone you meet and otherwise behaving as if you're on the front line of a military battlefield waiting to encounter the enemy. That's too much work and  besides its not very sociable to look like that.

Is it really getting to be that dangerous out here in Hoboville? Do I really need to carry more crap
than I already have in my pockets just in case I get attacked.I wish the answer was NO but as long as I see violent ex-con insane predators like Chris White cruising around looking for trouble and punk ass thieves laughing like children as they run away with my stuff, I've got to have some sort of self protection. I can't afford not to.

While most folks can make firm choices about where to live very quickly when their safety is at risk,
for me safety has become merely one more abstract attribute for consideration. I've been robbed  and beaten up by total strangers and other creeps too many times since becoming homeless to assume that I can avoid danger anywhere I go. For me its gonna come down to logistics: How much extra crap to I have to lug around everywhere I go in order to safe guard my shit? What restrictions/ inconveniences do I place on my mobility while carrying tools for safety?How much jail time am I willing to risk serving for using some sort of "weapon" to defend myself (assuming there are no witnesses around to back up my story)?

Safety is about risk taking-- taking one dangerous risk to reduce another.  Possibly and preferably spilling someone elses blood in order to avoid them spilling mine. There is only a "fair to good" chance of being safe even if I take the risk of preparing myself against the risk of danger. Yes merely preparing for self defense incurs a substantial risk of me possibly being arrested for carrying a concealed weapon (although I don't envision myself walking around holding a 16" long butcher knife  in my hand everywhere I go although I'd use it to cut my hamburgers and fries into little pieces at Jack N The Box and to stir my coffee at Starbucks).

Funny how depending on the situation, conceivably ANYTHING a person carries could  be deemed a weapon..a hair brush, a toothbrush,a ballpoint pen, a can of deodorant, a can of chili etc.
Last month I went downtown to the Hall of Justice to meet with the District Attorney regarding the trial of a local idiot who attacked me with a piece of lumber back in June and I was asked  by the Sheriff Deputies to leave the building after I set off the metal detectors with my metallic fork and spoon that were inside my backpack. I could return if without my fork and spoon but since I had no hotel room or storage place downtown to stash my metallic stuff, I called the lawyers and they came come down the elevator from their 11th floor offices and met with me outside on the sidewalk. They weren't afraid of my fork and spoon and they know I'm a hobo and that I carry lots of
my "household goods/belongings" with me where ever I go.

All in all, this entire situation...the inevidible crime wave I'm seeing here can  perhaps best be reduced by me getting off the streets and back into the work force. Otherwise I just  seem to lend myself to these dangerous situations. 


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