Monday, June 14, 2010

What hope can baseball have in St. Pete when the newspaper sues for panhandler reinstatement? Answer: none.

6/14, St. Pete Times: "Residents who oppose a lawsuit challenging the ban organized a small protest outside the St. Petersburg Times building. About three dozen people waved signs from 10 to 11 a.m. to show their disdain for a suit the newspaper's parent company filed against the city of St. Petersburg.
  • "I just don't appreciate the Times suing the city for a valid ordinance," said Jeremiah Rohr, 56, who held a sign saying "Drop the suit or Drop the Times."

Some protesters, like Rohr, live in Historic Kenwood and blame the homeless for

The City Council unanimously passed the ban June 3 in an effort to stem panhandling that has troubled neighborhood leaders.

  • Four days later, Times Publishing Co. sued the city in federal court, claiming the ban violates a constitutional right to free speech."
6/5: Resident says former panhandlers will be forced into crime to get money, or will move to Tampa where panhandling is legal:
  • "Zingg said the move will backfire. Others who rely on panhandling for income may turn to purse snatching or other crimes to make ends meet, he said, ...

Besides, he said, "if we don't do it here, we'll do it somewhere else."

The pair thought it might be worth taking a bus to Tampa, where panhandling is legal."...(from St. Pete Times, "Panhandlers say street solicitation ban will make things worse," 6/5 via Poynter.org/Romenesko. photo by St. Pete Times of panhandler after ban took effect.


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