Boots & Sabers

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0632, 08 Jun 22

A Lefty Explores the Depravity of San Francisco

How bad? This bad.

“And quite frankly, what San Francisco’s doing is not a safe consumption site at the Tenderloin Center. For lack of a better term, it’s opium den, where people can sit in Adirondack chairs and shoot dope all day. They’re monitored by a nonprofit worker that was given ten minutes of training on how to administer Narcan.”


As for whether addicts are availing themselves of services at Tenderloin Center, Wolf said, they are not.


“Forty thousand people have gone to that Tenderloin Center in the last month, and they linked less than half a percent of those people to treatment,” he said. “I don’t know what kind of weird experiment San Francisco is doing right now, but I promise you that that’s not helping anybody find recovery.”


Instead of fostering wellness, the center seems to be metastasizing the problem, the addiction spilling into the streets. I am going to do my best to not put too fine a point on this, to not illustrate what is happening within a few feet of Sandberg and me in a way that makes you think I am trying to win you to one side or another, but if you will, here is the scene: A young man stands in front of us babbling for ten minutes, wanting us to buy a vape pen or to have sex, it’s unclear which. A toothless woman screams. A legless man lights a pipe. Tourists photograph each other with City Hall in the middle distance, and a woman with a leg cast encrusted in grime rolls past. It’s not possible to tell how old she is: thirty? Fifty? She has no possessions that I can see, and no destination, rolling in a desultory manner toward and then away from several men also in wheelchairs, one whose foot is so badly infected my groin contracts and feels flash-burned.

Once again, we see a leftist policy that is allegedly based on good intentions (help addicts be safe and give them access to treatment) end up in utter failure and making the problem worse. These policies are rooted in a fantasy version of the human condition instead of the real world.

I’ve known my fair share of addicts. I have lost family members to addiction. Many of us have. And there is a truth to addiction… enablement just makes it worse. They have to hit a bottom before they will seek treatment. Often times that bottom is losing their marriage, job, or home. Sometimes it is going to jail where they have an opportunity to truly detox and get treatment. But offering an addict a “safe place” to indulge their demons with no consequences will always end up just like it did in San Francisco.

It’s cruel. It’s cruel to the addicts and it’s cruel to the people who have to suffer from the crime and disease that radiates out from them.


0632, 08 June 2022


  1. Merlin

    Dealers conveniently located right across the street and a friendly staff with Narcan at the ready. No mention of any law enforcement presence. What could possibly go wrong? Clustering the overdose deaths might take at least a little stress off of the EMS budget. I guess they could spin this as an attempt at fiscal responsibility.

  2. Mar

    It started when liberal groups like the ACLU brought lawsuits and closed down many institutions or limited how the mentally ill could be treated.
    Now, the mentally ill are roaming the streets everywhere and unless they want help, there is nothing the cops or hospitals can do.
    And now, in many liberal cities, they now encourage drug use along with crime.
    Even in one of the most conservative areas of the country, where I live, we have some of the big city problems and liberal policies prevent these people from getting help.

  3. penquin

    >Sometimes it is going to jail where they have an opportunity to truly detox and get treatment.

    Spoken like someone whose only view of prison life is via watching “Orange is the New Black”. Which is probably a good thing…’cause if you’re upset/angry about the “depravity” of these treatment centers then you’re certainly not ready to see what happens in America’s prison.

    But if you really think jail is the best place to get treatment for drug use/addiction, is it safe to assume you’d immediately call the cops if you found a baggie of something illegal hiding in your teenage daughter’s bedroom?

    >the crime and disease that radiates out from them.

    Why do you suppose it is that addicts of some drugs turn to crime while folks addicted to other substances don’t?

    For example – both caffeine & tobacco are extremely addictive, yet you rarely hear about those folks robbing stores to support their filthy habit. Do you beleive there is there something in the coca-plant that makes people say “I wanna rob&steal!” that isn’t found in tobacco leaves or is there other factors involved?

    Also, there used to be a LOT of crime & problems radiating from the booze trade…shootouts in the streets between retailers, adulterated product killing customers or making ’em go blind, etc etc….but most of that went away about 90 years ago. What changed back then to make that happen?

  4. Owen

    Oh Penguin… you’re adorable. I’m afraid that my life experience is much more varied than that. But feel free to stay in your bubble.

  5. penquin

    >I’m afraid that my life experience is much more varied than that.

    Varied enough to address the questions that were just asked? Or is your life so narrow that personal jabs is the only thing you got going on?

  6. Owen

    You have a bunch of straw men in your questions that assume things that I didn’t say, but I’ll take a stab.

    – I did not say that prison is the best place for treatment. It is simply where a lot of addicts end up when they hit bottom and start to get treatment. So no… I probably would not call the cops on my kid, but I would get him/her into treatment. And if it spiraled, calling the cops may be a last resort. Yes, I have family who had to resort to that.

    – You are making the legalization argument. If we legalize it, they won’t resort to crime. But that doesn’t work for the hard drugs that render people unemployable due to incapacitation. They can’t earn an income to feed their habits, so they resort to crime. Booze and nicotine are milder addictions where only the most severe cases result in physical incapacity to work. But it does still happen. There are plenty of drunks who commit crimes to feed their addictions. It’s just more common with the hard drugs because they have a greater impact on the mental and physical capacity of the user.

  7. penquin

    >…the hard drugs that render people unemployable due to incapacitation. They can’t earn an income to feed their habits

    “Contrary to popular belief, most Americans struggling with a substance use disorder (SUD) continue to hold down a job.”

    Yes, I am absolutely making an argument for re-legalization of those substances because I don’t beleive that banning an item is an efficient way to control undesirable behavior. Doesn’t matter what the widget is…a pill, a gun, an all-natural plant, whatever….blaming an inanimate item for the actions of a person is just a cop-out & lame excuse.

    If you are really that concerned about people not holding down a job, then why not make that a jailable offense? While I would be against that as well, it certainly is more fair to target the behavior of the few rather than punish an entire group whose only “offense” is having something you don’t want them to have.

    And yes – before you ask, I tell my gun-grabbing acquaintances the exact same thing…’cause ya’ll are all using the exact same argument.

  8. Tuerqas

    >If you are really that concerned about people not holding down a job, then why not make that a jailable offense? While I would be against that as well, it certainly is more fair to target the behavior of the few rather than punish an entire group whose only “offense” is having something you don’t want them to have.

    That is contradictory to me. Owen’s statement was that the taking of the hard drugs is the behavior that prevents holding down the job. The undesired behavior is not the losing of the job (which is not a behavior, btw) it is the loss of capacity to do a job resulting in termination. Illegalizing the drug, as misdirected as it may be IS targeting the behavior. So if you are FOR targeting the behavior you should be for illegalization or limiting access to them.

    Your link states that it includes alcohol (legal) and marijuana (semi-legal) as the bulk of the study’s contents. Those are not defined as hard drugs (Owen’s qualification) so the link is not germane (I would count cocaine as only a borderline hard drug).

  9. Mar

    I read the article, Johnny. It was interesting, but I missed the part what the solutions were.
    The voters caused the problems in San Francisco and only the voters can solve the problem.
    They might be on the right track, but let’s see who they replace the ousted politicians
    Remember, San Francisco is an elitist town and supports elitists like Nancy Pelosi. There is really no hope for the city. It’s a lost city and will take decades to go back to a civilized city, if ever.
    But right now, it is a 3rd world city, comparable to the slums in India.

  10. Owen

    That was a LOOOONG article, but thanks for sharing. I used to go to San Francisco a fair amount and stayed downtown. I once ran from my waterfront hotel, along the bay shore, across Golden Gate and back, through the battery and the Presidio, and back down to my hotel. It was a wonderful afternoon and a cherished memory. I wouldn’t try it now. The city is still physically beautiful, but it’s become culturally cruel.

  11. Mar

    Physically beautiful? Yeah, I don’t think so.
    It’s hard to admire natural beauty when someone is pooping on your shoes. Some old naked guy or lady walks by you. Or worry about getting stuck by the needles on the sidewalk. Or the homeless person sleeping in areas where you want to take pictures of tge Golden Gate. How can you admire the ocean when you are stepping over poop, pee and bodies?

  12. MHMaley

    If legalized, “hard drugs would kill fewer people .

    Why , because the fentanyl ( which is the latest epidemic ) is fake heroin laced with animal tranquilizer and is the overwhelming cause of overdoses now in the hard drug community .

    Legalization would follow the low crime , corporate owned alcohol industry that still has abuse of its product but isn’t argued over by alcohol gangs killing each other and citizen’s over street corners .
    ( For this exercise , we’ll ignore the tavern league ).

    Addict’s will still die but if crime is the issue , legalization goes a long way in taking the profit incentive out of the equation .

  13. dad29

    Maley, you don’t get out much, do you?

    Colorado legalized pot and had wonderful projections of its new-found tax revenue.

    Which projections did not come true because the Cartel under-sold the ‘legit’ shops. Crime still pays–for the cartel. For legit businesses and the State–not so much

  14. Mar

    Oh, Malaysia, here in Arizona, we legalized pot.
    The dispensaries that sell pot is very expensive compared to street pot.
    If hard drugs are legalized, the cartels cut the price to compete with legal drugs.

  15. Mar

    Oh, Malay, it should have been. I guess spell check equates Maley with Malaysia.

  16. MjM

    In 2020 Oregon nitwits voted to decriminalize ‘personal amounts’ of coke, meth, horse, and any other federally illegal drug. $100 ticket, waived if you contact a drug clinic (you don’t have to actually participate, you just need a piece of paper from the clinic saying you stopped by).

    The result? A 700% increase in overdoses and 120% increase in drug deaths.

    Measure 110 authorized $300 million to spend on drug clinics (not g’vment clinics, mind you), money taken from taxes on Oregon’s legal reefer industry. To date, $40 million has been spent to ‘help’ 16,000 druggies. That’s $2,500 each. How much ‘ help’ do you suppose one gets for $2500?

    The logic of Leftnics: Let them shoot up, toke up, snort up. Then we’ll treat them…. sorta.

  17. Jason

    >How much ‘ help’ do you suppose one gets for $2500?

    Sounds like a few visits with the free Narcan. One lady in my county gets a freebie every week. She got two Narcan doses in one 24 hour period last year, the EMT / Police get her breathing again, she refuses help when she comes to, they leave.

    So very effective use of our tax dollars.

  18. MjM

    Enjoy! And I bet you are just giddy over you still paying for those federal crack pipes, never mind the Whitehouse lies.

    Back in … 2016, I think, …. the top cop in Madison proposed the same scheme; legalize and tax reefer to pay for rehabbing the addicts he was going to create. It didn’t get that far, yet.

    They did decriminalize reefer. First, in private settings, then two years ago in public. You can’t buy or sell but you can possess (liberal logic strikes again). Walk around with a two-finger baggie anywhere on Madison public property, fire up a doobie on the street corner, bong yer brain on City Hall’s steps.

    Then Phony nEvers put it in his budget February ‘21 and chimed in a month later…..

    “Legalizing and taxing marijuana in Wisconsin—just like we do already with alcohol—ensures a controlled market and safe product are available for both recreational and medicinal users and can open the door for countless opportunities for us to reinvest in our communities and create a more equitable state.”

    One of his arguments was Wisconsin was losing revenue to Jane-legal states Illinois and Michigan cuz all us cheeseheads were running over the borders to buy really really expensive dope rather than the cheaper usual way. (Here’s a hint, Phony: you can’t lose something you’ve never had.).

    So, yea, let’s become Illinois. Great model to follow.

    It’s amazing to me how consistently implementation of Democrat goody-two-shoes policies create the opposite of the intention. And after failure it always mo’ money mo’ money mo’ money.

    As if the ancient proverb Learn From Mistakes never existed.

  19. Jason

    >As if the ancient proverb Learn From Mistakes never existed.

    And that’s why I reminded Penny about the inner city blight the 60’s heroin brought us. Hes happy to remind us of what happened during prohibition and bathtub gin, but can’t remember what Baltimore, DC, Philly, etc looked like 40 years later.

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