144Re: [Infoshop] Fwd: [sarasotafnb] City Commissioner Terry Turner Wants to Meet FNB Organizers
- Nov 22, 2009I think you hit a lot of good points, and it's great that dialog with
the commissioner happened.
But at risk of seeming divisive, I think it might be a waste to spend
much time trying to enlighten and appeal to the 5 points neighborhood
association, the police, and other institutions which are actively
Rather than try to convince those with power to change their attitudes
and hope for mercy, it seems like a more effective strategy would be to
build our own power by organizing those who are already potentially
sympathetic. I'm sure there are already a lot of people who are
supportive of the ideals you outlined. Church congregations, political
groups like the Green party, and homeless service providers are natural
I guess after seeing politics in Sarasota for a while, it seems clear
that the anti-homeless contingent is not going to change their mind, and
they're very well organized, whereas the homeless and people who care
about them are not organized or represented. Really, FNB seems like the
only organization in the whole city that's actually willing to represent
the interests of the homeless. That's a big responsibility.
An idea that occurred to me is to make a FNB newsletter which covers
what's up with FNB, what's happening with homeless repression and
documents exchanges like you had with the commissioner. This could be
distributed widely to the groups mentioned above, and maybe serve as a
way to build a base which would be ready to take action in case FNB is
I'd be happy to help with some kind of effort like that, if there's
energy for it.
Melissa Fisher wrote:
> the meeting with FNB and the Co. Commissoner, as well as my thoughts and
> check out FNB and the press, we've been getting a lot of coverege
> lately. Hanna Brown is writing an article for the catylist as well.
> so the meeting was sort of framed in terry's desire to express the
> pressure he is getting from 5 points residents to do something about the
> homeless problem downtown. he says they feel that the feedings on
> Thursday (solomon's group?) and Friday night bring the homeless to
> loiter before and after serving in the park. he says that shop owners
> feel afraid. Hanna Brown has mentioned some of the same grueling
> sentiments that these people expressed at a recent meeting of 100 strong
> with the county commissioners, lieutenant Karr (heads 5 points) and
> other bureaucrats.
> In speaking with him about food not bombs i tried very hard to express
> three things: 1. Food not bombs has a right to the park and will not
> leave. 2. we aren't just a charity giving out food, trying to solve
> symptoms of structural hunger and violence...but we are engaging in a
> new orientation-one in which community building, civic engagement, and
> sharing offer possibilities for new social process and 3. 5 points helps
> fnb's specific goal of visibility in efforts to create a public dialogue
> centered on homelessness and community issues across class lines (what
> better place then 5 points) this being done in pursuit of community
> integration where everyone eats, not just the homeless, and people share
> the different perspectives and resources they have.
> Terry seemed to be pretty surprised to hear our ideas and our fervor in
> maintaining our stance. I feel like the meeting could have gone better,
> but 5 people with opinions are of course going to run into some problems
> in a tight conversation. Terry brought Jim Lampl, retired environmental
> consultant and supposed philanthropist, with him to the meeting. Jim
> talked a lot and may have been saying some of the things Terry would
> have liked to. Apparently 5 points residents (not to be confused with
> people residing in 5 points) have a lot of money they are willing to
> throw at the "problem" as long as they don't have to see it anymore.
> Maryanne Servienne has been working on getting a facility for the
> homeless with showers and toilets, and internet (so they will stay away
> from the library). Jim said he could get that accomplished with some
> commitment on the part of FNB to stay out of 5 points.
> more than a direct conflict with the city i think we are in store for-
> a crack down on the transients in downtown
> taking benches out of park
> a huge effort to take away 5 points park (for renovation/anti-vagrant
> design :( )
> possibility of stricter permit requirements and other laws to curb
> feedings and public use, maybe even the further privatization of sidewalks
> where Jim is trying to organize with the library and an ACLU lawyer to
> put classes together specifically for the homeless on their civic rights
> and trying to put some kind of code of conduct together for the homeless
> (where things like not spitting and putting your cig butts in the trash
> or not cussing are valued against the back drop of stereotypes of vagrancy)
> I sort of feel like the property owning 5 points residents, the people
> afraid of the homeless, the one's with the homeless problem (and i don't
> mean the homeless) need to be re-educated on public space, what
> democracy looks like, equality and prejudice, and human rights. It is
> fucked up that they are afraid in their home space, but to solve their
> fear they need to be engaged in some self reflection and structural
> understanding, rather than blaming the homeless and demanding their
> disappearance/catering to the "upper class" by cleaning up (also, i am
> implying that in terms of fear, they are part of the problem). however
> this isn't just a top down issue in order to protect our space and
> created an integrated accessible community within it we are going to
> have to work on mediating the conflicting perspectives and claims to 5
> public image then becomes a huge issue in mediating conceptions on the
> homeless. Lieutennant Carr told attendants to the concerned citizens
> meeting there are three reasons people are homeless, 1. alcohol abuse,
> 2. drug abuse, 3 laziness (seriously, what the fuck) He is in a pretty
> high position of power in SRQ and has some authority in telling people
> whats up. We need to try and create some communication channels with
> people willing to listen to other possibilities then the three listed by
> lieutenant Carr.
> what can FNB do to work on the public image and perception of the
> homeless. we were thinking bringing music and poetry to the park would
> help. right now co. commissioner krishner is proposing a partnership
> with the opera house to always play opera in the park as a deterrent for
> the homeless, citing London and Seattle or someplace as examples (A
> bogus article, check it out in the tribune) instead of finding music
> that deters anyone, we were thinking music that would draw people to the
> park that normally wouldn't hang out. lets follow mlk jr's dream through
> race, ethnicity, and class....so that rich and poor folks of all colors
> and creeds will be chillen in 5 points eating good veggie feasts. we
> could also ask for volunteers from the group to help us clean up and
> sweep up, though i don't want to run around like jim did last week and
> complain loudly about how these people shouldn't be leaving their
> cigarette butts all over the place while ignoring the irony of the cars
> owning drivers popping their butts out the window on the fly next to the
> He's been coming down to the park for FNB which is nice. I think he
> could be a resource for understanding what to do and what not, and for
> building coalitions and possible alliances for homeless rights. he may
> also just be trying to spy...its hard to say.
> other ideas-have a plant day at the park (hopefully funded by city)
> where fnb pple plant plants.
> so basically we could try and revamp the homeless perception by framing
> there presence as civic servants and ethical beings. the bottom line
> seems to me that the problem won't ever really be addressed until we can
> speak some power to these people claiming fright as right to
> monopolizing down town and demanding homeless evacuation.
> On Sun, Nov 22, 2009 at 1:48 AM, Anthony Doe <cirv.anthony@...
> <mailto:cirv.anthony@...>> wrote:
> It sounds like the downtown merchants are getting a louder say than
> the people in our community, many of us understanding being a few
> paychecks from needing to find a hot meal in the park, or having
> joined FNB for a meal in the park. This is the second group that
> Linda Holland and her folks down there have fought to kick out of a
> park for sharing meals. We argued against the city ordinance last
> time that forbids gatherings of 75 people or more without a permit.
> Lou Ann Palmer and Ken Shelin both supported that policy, as did
> Mary Ann Servian. We have been working to get rid of that mind
> set. I am not saying you are or aren't, I am just saying that this
> is an important issue to many in our community. I don't think many
> are aware that the downtown folks are seeking to kick FNB out of the
> park somehow.
> It sure would be nice if any of our commissioners would stand up and
> defend the rights of our transient population in Sarasota. We would
> love to see the city provide some basic shelter for these folks in
> our community.
> Anthony Lorenzo
> On Sun, Nov 22, 2009 at 1:32 AM, Terry Turner
> <terryturner@... <mailto:terryturner@...>> wrote:
> I know all that you have written, including your last
> sentence__. My email to you did not mention or threaten any of
> the of the measures you enumerated. Sorry my email alarmed you.
> It was not meant to. I meant only to thank you for helping me.
> Anthony Doe wrote:
>> Dear Commissioner Turner:
>> Sarasota FNB has a RIGHT to gather, discuss politics, and eat
>> in the park. That is too bad if some people down there think
>> that they are a nuisance. They have a RIGHT to gather in the
>> park. There is a pretty strong court ruling establishing
>> this, Comissioner Turner, recently decided in Orlando.
>> Any attempt to interfere with their activities will be met
>> with opposition, both in placing the issue on the ballot as a
>> charter amendment re-affirming FNB's rights and with litigation.
>> As someone who endorsed you on the campaign trail (after Rick
>> Farmer's elimination in the initial election), I hope you will
>> reconsider. Treating the homeless as a problem that should be
>> incarcerated or starved out of town is not a position I for
>> one can continue to support in any way.
>> I will certainly be urging other like-minded Sarasotans to
>> contact you and affirm that we support FNB and their RIGHT to
>> gather and share food and political discourse in public parks.
>> The only solution I can imagine is the city creating a space
>> for FNB to cook food for homeless people that might be a
>> reasonable position for the city.
>> Anthony Lorenzo
>> On Sat, Nov 21, 2009 at 7:03 PM, Terry Turner
>> <terryturner@... <mailto:terryturner@...>> wrote:
>> I met with three New College students. They are clearly
>> well meaning and earnest. It is impossible not to be
>> sympathetic with their goals. That said, the congestion
>> and disruption caused by the concentration of homeless at
>> 5 points is causing a backlash from downtown residents and
>> business owners. We have to find a way to improve the
>> Thanks for making the introduction
>> Anthony Doe wrote:
>>> I received the following response from the FNB folks
>>> (Food Not Bombs). I told them to call you, but in case
>>> you wished to contact them.
>>> Anthony Lorenzo
>>> On Tue, Nov 10, 2009 at 2:10 PM, Marlon
>>> <marlon@... <mailto:marlon@...>> wrote:
>>> melissa seems interested, maybe get in touch with her:
>>> Melissa Fisher wrote:
>>> > hey,
>>> > on following up. when does he want to meet? he can
>>> email me at
>>> > melissa.fisher@...
>>> <mailto:melissa.fisher@...>> or call at
>>> > 941-460-5021
>>> > but there might be some more general email that i
>>> don't know about. we
>>> > could definitely get a group together to speak with
>>> him. did he seem in
>>> > support on the campaign trail?
>>> > meltron
>>> > On Tue, Nov 10, 2009 at 12:55 PM, Marlon
>>> <marlon@... <mailto:marlon@...>
>>> > <mailto:marlon@...
>>> <mailto:marlon@...>>> wrote:
>>> > Anthony Doe wrote:
>>> > >
>>> > >
>>> > > Terry Turner, newly elected citywide
>>> commissioner, wishes to meet with
>>> > > FNB organizers to discuss the Five Points
>>> Park community meals. I am
>>> > > not sure what his agenda is... though i did
>>> grill him about this issue
>>> > > on the campaign trail (asking if he would
>>> continue to support/allow
>>> > > students having meals in the parks with
>>> homeless people). He
>>> > called me
>>> > > this morning and asked me if i could put him
>>> in touch with the group.
>>> > > Please, someone follow up on this.
>>> > >
>>> > > Anthony Lorenzo
>>> > >
>>> > > ---------- Forwarded message ----------
>>> > > From: *Terry Turner* <terryturner@...
>>> > <mailto:terryturner@...
>>> > > <mailto:terryturner@...
>>> > > Date: Tue, Nov 10, 2009 at 7:59 AM
>>> > > Subject: contact info
>>> > > To: Anthony Doe <cirv.anthony@...
>>> > <mailto:cirv.anthony@...
>>> > <mailto:cirv.anthony@...
>>> > >
>>> > >
>>> > > A
>>> > >
>>> > > My cell phone is 941-914-0913.
>>> > >
>>> > > T
>>> > >
>>> > >
>>> > >
>>> > >
>>> > _______________________________________________
>>> > Infoshop mailing list
>>> > Infoshop@...
>>> > http://lists.ncf.edu/mailman/listinfo/infoshop
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