September 3, 2013

Madison's "Philosopher’s Grove" attracts crime.

For the annals of unintended consequences:
[T]he city is rethinking the physical design of the public space [at the State Street and of the Capitol Square], especially the “Philosopher’s Grove” next to the Wisconsin Historical Museum and the 100 block of West Mifflin Street that connects with the Central Library and Overture Center.
The problem:
The area, benign much of the time, has become a magnet for chronic alcoholics and others who use doorways and alleys as toilets, argue and fight, deal and use drugs, steal and cause other problems.

Although many who hang out at the junction are homeless, the area more recently has attracted an element who might be involved in gangs, engaged in the drug trade and more violent....
This "Philosopher’s Grove" appears at the vbeginning of one of our favorite videos from the 2011, with the memorable line "All the assholes are over on the other side," spoken by one of the "homeless" types. (I put quotes and "types" there because I don't know whether any given individual has a home.) The "assholes" in his locution were the protesters who were crowding the square, impinging on their environment.



It's all a matter of point of view. You may see the "chronic alcoholics" and drug dealers as the problem, but to them, you could be the problem.

Consider the likelihood that whoever you are — wherever you are — you're going to think all the assholes are over on the other side.

4 comments:

SGT Ted said...

When you've lost the chronic alcoholics and drug dealers, what can you say?

Even they know what's what.

Kev said...

(the other kev)

Ah, progressive utopia - synonymous with 'shit.'

And where are the brilliant people who came with this idea? Surely moved on their next great cause. Consequences are for little people, after all.

mrs. e said...

It's also a different perspective when you understand that that could have been you. There are no "others" in that sense.

Peter said...

Which is to say, for all its trendiness, real anarchy often doesn't work so well.