Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Begging Bowl

Oh this is rich, pardon the pun, Cherniak is begging online for folks to pay his way to the Liberal Convention.

I thought there were laws against panhandling.

But of course he is not a poor person........

Private Needs and Public Space: Politics, Poverty, and Anti-Panhandling By-Laws in Canadian Cities" by Damian Collins and Nicholas Blomley,
examines the recent rise in anti-panhandling regulations in Canadian cities within the greater context of a North American movement to purify public spaces. Being geographers, their focus is the interaction of geography and law. Their stated aim in this essay is to spatialize anti-panhandling by-laws.
They are intrigued that the individual transaction of begging for money is politicized and regulated because it occurs in a space that is public. Their argument focuses specifically on Canadian downtown spaces, highlighting as dynamics in this contemporary situation the great financial investment in urban spaces, growing economic disparities between the inhabitants of city cores, and moral apprehensions about how the homeless spend this money. There is fear that allowing certain marginalized people to pursue their lives in our streets will promote socio-economic decline, and prevent the majority from being able to engage in legitimate public activities. The authors suggest that this regulatory movement is more than a further privatizing of public space. The private actions of the panhandlers have become enmeshed in public values regarding the appropriate use of public space. Examining the interaction of law within society as well as the space it occupies is key to a greater comprehension of the issue.



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1 comment:

Fell said...

Eugene, thanks for this blog. I just came across it and will be checking back for more of your insights into Edmonton.