A license to (be) ill?

Categories: General Archive

In our modern civic culture, we tend to treat symptoms, not causes. Case in point: Minneapolis Police Chief Bill McManus wants the city to enact an ordinance that would force panhandlers to obtain licenses. Such a law, McManus tells the Skyway News, would give cops the right to arrest or cite unregistered panhandlers and "would allow citizens to identify [registered] panhandlers who get aggressive in any way."

Does McManus really believe that an "aggressive" panhandler is going to diplay his license at the request of a displeased citizen? Or is this just his way of dealing with critics who think it is the police department's job to address big social problems--homelessness, mental illness, addiction--that most politicians prefer to ignore? 


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