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rekoil wrote in atlanta

Email from the Midtown-Ponce Security Alliance I just received...

It has come to our attention that Whole Foods on Ponce is running a benefit for the organization operating the Peachtree Pine shelter. This causes great concern for us in light of two major incidents in our neighborhood involving street people.

- The tourist murdered by a panhandler at 14th and Spring (story here)
- A resident brutally assaulted with a brick at 8th and Piedmont (3 blocks from my home, story here)

As you remember, the City worked to have state and federal funding cut off from the Peachtree Pine shelter. After all these years, the Peachtree Pine shelter has shown itself to be a massive contributor to neighborhood crime and disorder. Day and night drug dealers ply their trade on that block, and the shelter simply washes their hands of the detrimental impact on the community. The shelter does nothing whatsoever to help people out of "homelessness" and onward to a more productive life. They merely provide a street people facility in which to hang out when they take breaks from their criminal and nuisance activity.

Whole Foods has committed 5 percent of all of their sales for today (9/10) to go toward this massive community nuisance under the disguise of the "Metro Task Force for the Homeless." In all likelihood, Whole Foods will furnish several thousand dollars to this "task force" so that crime and disorder in our community can continue.

Please do not shop at Whole Foods today. We also urge you to call Whole Foods and voice your displeasure at their sponsorship of neighborhood crime and disorder. The phone number for the offending store is 404-853-1681.

For background information you may wish to read the following resources on the MPSA website:

1. Digest of Peachtree Pine Responses – A dossier of letters from the community opposing funding for the Metro Task Force for the Homeless. This would shed light on the character of the organization.

2. The MPSA letter to the Atlanta City Council urging them not to approve recommendation for funding for this community nuisance

3. A similar letter from the Midtown Neighbors’ Association
In the name of a safer neighborhood please boycott Whole Foods today, and reconsider your ongoing patronage of that business contributing to major problem in the neighborhood you call home.

I should note that this isn't simple NIMBY reactionarianism - St. Mark's operates a soup line that is much closer to my home than Peachtree Pine, and it presents no problems. Other shelters in the city, such as the Union Mission, do not allow their patrons to loiter in the immediate area like Peachtree Pine does (nor do they allow drug dealers to set up shop right across the street, for that matter). Peachtree Pine is simply a badly run shelter that can't be bothered to police the sidewalk outside its own building, much less mitigate the harm done to the community at the hands of its patrons. It does not deserve the community's support.

Update: Whole Foods has cancelled the benefit day due to the negative feedback they received. You can all carry on spending your Whole Paycheck for overpriced orange juice. :)

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1. PeachtreePine is not a residential area.

2. Midtown/Ponce is run by Peggy "I shut down Backstreet" Denby. I call her Peggy NIMBY. To her, everything not white and Protestant looks like a 'problem' to be 'dealt with'. Pardon me while I take the shrillness with a grain of salt.

3. The two horrible incidents did not happen ANYWHERE NEAR PeachtreePine. Also, bricked dude smacked the asshole first. Best to keep your guard up, yo? What did that have to do with Whole Foods, again? Crime happens? Was that a homeless/vagrant that attacked this guy? Or was he just 'black'? Why don't you blame the tornado damage on them too?

4. I live/work in one of the toughest neighborhoods in Midtown (3rd/Spring). I openly carry a sidearm. That is what I do. Openly carry. Guess what? We don't get bothered and we walk the streets at all times of the day and night. When one takes personal responsibility for their own safety, one has to worry less about the cops.

5. Is this the ONLY shelter Whole Foods is helping out?

I share your concerns but not your fears.

1. The Reynolds, and several other apartment complexes, are within a couple blocks of the shelter.

2. The MPSA also opposed the parking variance application for your own Spring 4th center, which was ultimately denied. Details here. It's not fair to trash them without full disclosure.

3. I don't think the intention was to directly link the attacks to Peachtree Pine, simply to illustrate that crimes committed by homeless are a real problem in Midtown.

4. Not everyone wants to carry a gun everywhere they go.

5. Link to Metro Task Force For The Homeless' webpage: Anita Beatty, Executive Director. Same address as Peachtree Pine. And there's a link to the Whole Foods benefit day on the front page.

Would you mind getting your arguments from an objective source please? This video comes from the shelter directly - it's PR, nothing more.

Everything the MPSA does just screams NIMBY. They take random occurrences and paint them as evidence of a vast underworld of horribleness and crime where black folk are just WAITING to rape and kill white folk, so we need to get rid of them as fast as possible. Oh, and we don't want gay people with their drugs and stuff, so they're gone too.

The MPSA also decided that they didn't like poor gay black folk lingering in Piedmont Park during normal operating hours and tried to get them kicked out because they "might cause a nuisance". Thus perpetuating the cycle of disenfranchisement forever more.

The MPSA can go fuck itself. I'm not saying Peachtree Pine isn't a problem. I'm just saying that anything the MPSA is automatically full of shit and needs to be corroborated by an independent source before it should be believed.

The MPSA also decided that they didn't like poor gay black folk lingering in Piedmont Park during normal operating hours and tried to get them kicked out because they "might cause a nuisance". Thus perpetuating the cycle of disenfranchisement forever more.

Can you back that up?

(Deleted comment)
(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand

rather than called, i emailed

i emailed my rant. basically, i C&Ped this post in an email to WF headquarters.

I just got a reply back:

Thank you for sharing your feedback. Whole Foods Market Ponce de Leon has cancelled this event.

Lesley Sifford
Marketing Team Leader
Whole Foods Market|Ponce de Leon
404.853.1681 phone
404.853.1632 fax

What amazes me is the difference between Peachtree-Pine and the Union Mission. I've lived across the street from the Union Mission for six years and they've never been a problem. On the other hand, it is nearly impossible to walk within three blocks of Peachtree-Pine and not get harrassed.

Thanks for mentioning that. This is not a blanket NIMBY issue - there *are* well-run shelters in the city. The problem is that Peachtree Pine is *not* one of them.

I'm not saying I agree or disagree; I'm not that well read on the issue. What I do know, however, is that wouldn't it be a mite more effective to devote your energies to the closing, reformation, and reopening of Peachtree Pine than just bitching about a misguided corporate fundraiser? The issue clearly means a lot to you, so why not actually fix it? Denying the shelter a couple bucks probably isn't going to do it.

I believe that denying support to the shelter's current management can be quite effective. It's important to distinguish opposition to the shelter's management as it is run today from opposition to its existence altogether. It's too easy to paint those who oppose the shelter's management with the NIMBY brush. If the shelter took steps to limit nearby loitering, to keep out those who have no desire for rehabilitation, and to stop the drug dealing that happens right outside their building, we wouldn't be having this discussion, as the example of the Union Mission demonstrates.

I'd much prefer to see a well-run shelter than to see the shelter shut down, but the current situation cannot continue to be condoned.

When will they finally invent a car fueled by the flesh of the homeless?

As soon as they finally give up on that one run by babies.

Once again a prime example of what happens when you feed the homeless. They lose their fear of humans and become a nuisance.

You are an idiot. Perhaps you should open some camps in the area, maybe use them to teach people to concentrate? I'm sure Peggy would help with that after you two put your clothes back on....ewwww..(shudder)....

Midtown resident here.

I've lived in midtown my entire life, and the only unruly people I've had to deal with were the drunks who spill out of Piedmont park after big events.

Outlawing homelessness is not a solution.

Personally having lived in midtown/va hi for over 10 years and moving because of hipsters willing to pay 6 times the rent.. I gotta say. YA MOVE in to a CITY you can not EXPECT the homeless shelters that have been there for 40 years to close down. The homeless in this city have lost several resources because people needed to build over priced condos.
Leave them what little they have left.

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