The jobless in New Jersey find refuge in Tent City

DJ Evel Ed

MayYourCumCrustedCocksBeConstantlyCoveredInCunt
Nov 30, 2003
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Up your ass!
#1


Cars and trucks cruise along Cedar Bridge Avenue, drivers listening to radio anchors reporting the headline that a record 46 million Americans are living in poverty, while 50 feet from the bustling boulevard, hidden by the woods that border the road, lies a shocking example of that shameful statistic.
Behind the trees, six dozen homeless Americans have set up camp, in tents, teepees and huts, residents of what they call Tent City. It's a place where those out of work and out of luck can drop out of society while living as cheaply as possible.

"It's a community here," said the Rev. Steven Brigham, who founded Tent City in 2006 as part of his Lakewood Outreach Ministry Church. "They have a sense of belonging."
In the past year Brigham has seen Tent City's population nearly double as the jobs recession drags on.
Angelo Villanueva jabs at a homemade punching bag he hung from a tree -- a plastic bag filled with dirt wrapped with tape. It's a "stress reliever," said Villanueva. He's a skilled mason who worked construction jobs for nearly two decades, then fell victim to a sucker punch from the housing collapse. Villanueva, also an artist who has been drawing sketches of Tent City, never dreamed that he'd be among the nation's homeless.
"You think of a homeless person, you think of a wino. But it can happen to anyone at any time," said Villanueva. "I had the wrong conception of a homeless person -- I figure he's a bum, a deadbeat."
Joe Giammona, an unemployed handyman, drinks from a can of Pepsi as he watches a neighbor cook sausage and eggs on a communal grill. Giammona moved here five months ago after a shooting near the rooming house where he previously lived in Asbury Park, New Jersey. He says he's constantly searching for a job but hasn't been able to catch a break.
"It just seems like every door is shut in my face. You know there's nothing hiring. I always hear that things are slow right now. 'Come back in the fall, come back in the spring,' and then when I come back to these places it's always an excuse after an excuse. You can't get hired anywhere," said Giammona. "I would take anything right now, anything that's willing to hire."
Brigham receives donations from individuals, churches and synagogues that he says allow him to operate Tent City for about $1,000-a-month.
Loaves of bread are piled on a communal table, next to plastic garbage bags filled with clothing. Cans of food sit neatly in a wooden pantry. Residents are free to take what they need.

There are makeshift solutions to conveniences that most people take for granted. A power generator is connected to a pump that delivers groundwater to a both a shower and washing machine. Nearby sits a hot water heater that works off a propane tank.
"They've got all their needs met here," said Brigham.
Tent City residents recycle plastic bottles. The township picks up garbage once a week. But, that's as much help as local government provides. Lakewood Township is suing Brigham and his Tent City residents to get them off public lands
Lakewood Township referred CNN's inquiry to its attorney, Jan L. Wouters, who did not return phone calls and e-mails.
Brigham, with the help of a private attorney who is donating his time, has been battling the suit.
"The government has a responsibility to be sympathetic to the plight of the poor and to the homeless. And to push them out is cruel, it's cruel and unusual. It's cold-hearted," said Brigham.
The two sides had reached a temporary agreement that required Brigham to dismantle some of Tent City's structures. But, at a hearing this week Lakewood Township gave notice it intends to move forward with its legal effort against the encampment.
Ocean County, where Lakewood is located, provides shelter for the homeless in motels and hotels, as well as a shelter in Atlantic City (which is in Atlantic County), according to Jean Cipriani, attorney for the Ocean County Board of Social Services.
"The county has no position on Tent City," said Cipriani.
Tent City residents are hopeful they'll be able to remain in their community, even through the winter. That's what Marilyn and Michael Berenzweig did last year. Marilyn, a textile designer who worked in New York just two years ago, and her husband Michael, a former public radio producer, have been living here for 16 months, with fading hope of finding employment.
"It's very hard for a company to decide to use a 61-year-old trainee. I'm too young for Social Security. It's going to be a rocky flight. It's been a rocky flight," said Marilyn Berenzweig.


I didn't know Tommy Chong was living in NJ.


Next time I'm in Lakewood, I'm checking this out. I guess I'll bring a can of peas. Or is it canapes?
 
May 24, 2004
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#2
Shortly after Barry H. took office, there were stories about how these Obamavilles were popping up in California and Washington. I'm surprised there aren't more of them. Either that or the media isn't covering it (that wouldn't surprise me either).
 

JoeyDVDZ

That's MR. MOJO, Motherfucker!
Aug 20, 2004
29,349
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#3
My aunt collects clothes, blankets & food, stuff like that, and brings them over to Tent City. She actually has a few friends among the residents. Once, she went to volunteer her time to help out, and was mistaken for one of them. (She doesn't much care about her personal appearance, and kinda looks disheveled. Love her anyway.)

She actually is a very cool lady.
 

JoeyDVDZ

That's MR. MOJO, Motherfucker!
Aug 20, 2004
29,349
5,756
763
#6
Show me one person who can actually survive (solo) on 11k a year, the governments definition of "poverty". 11k a year doesn't even get you a single room in a flophouse. I bet nobody in politics lives like that.
 

DJ Evel Ed

MayYourCumCrustedCocksBeConstantlyCoveredInCunt
Nov 30, 2003
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Up your ass!
#7





Uncanny...

Wow Christopher Lee really let himself go. I wonder if he smokes pot in the woods too?

and whats with that jacket? Yeah he's high.
 

DJ Evel Ed

MayYourCumCrustedCocksBeConstantlyCoveredInCunt
Nov 30, 2003
2,601
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613
Up your ass!
#8
Why is the government fucking with these people? (I know, shelters, motels etc..but that's expensive) If they get evicted, they should camp at the lawyer's house who evicted them.
 

Valk

Spreading the Virus on NJ GSP 91 to 148
Aug 20, 2006
866
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301
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#9
For those of you unfamiliar with Lakewood Township, the town is owned and operated by a certain group of ppl that wear funny little round hats and their name rhymes with "acidic news"... Yeah, its their fault.
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
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Jan 12, 2010
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#10
Show me one person who can actually survive (solo) on 11k a year, the governments definition of "poverty". 11k a year doesn't even get you a single room in a flophouse. I bet nobody in politics lives like that.
I've done it while going to school. It's not fun, but absolutely possible. Paid $215 in rent (had three roommates), ate ramen and hot dogs most of the time, and didn't have video game systems or any of that bullshit. $11,000 may be impossible to live off of in Manhattan, but for most of the country it's absolutely enough to get by.
 

MilkmanDan

Uncontrollable Urge
Jan 13, 2003
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#11
I've done it while going to school. It's not fun, but absolutely possible. Paid $215 in rent (had three roommates), ate ramen and hot dogs most of the time, and didn't have video game systems or any of that bullshit. $11,000 may be impossible to live off of in Manhattan, but for most of the country it's absolutely enough to get by.
No it .. really isnt. unless you want to rent a 1 room apartment in someone elses place and bus/train to work... no.
Everyone deserves a house. You work for it, you get it. You pay for it, the taxes are insane (especially in NJ) but you keep fucking working for it.
Its a bad time, which means you have to try extra hard to get what you want.. or settle for being a bum.
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
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#12
No it .. really isnt. unless you want to rent a 1 room apartment in someone elses place and bus/train to work... no.
I can't tell if you're being sarcastic, but we're talking about "surviving", not living comfortably and being financially secure. I consider surviving as having an inhabitable building to live in, enough food for a balanced diet, and money for basic utilities (water, sewage, heat, and electricity). Sure you have to make sacrifices like having roommates, not eating out, not having cable, and so on, but when it comes to "surviving" it's more than possible (again, in all but the most expensive areas of the country).

No, not everyone does.
No, everyone does not.
 

MilkmanDan

Uncontrollable Urge
Jan 13, 2003
15,588
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Philly
#13
I can't tell if you're being sarcastic, but we're talking about "surviving", not living comfortably and being financially secure. I consider surviving as having an inhabitable building to live in, enough food for a balanced diet, and money for basic utilities (water, sewage, heat, and electricity). Sure you have to make sacrifices like having roommates, not eating out, not having cable, and so on, but when it comes to "surviving" it's more than possible (again, in all but the most expensive areas of the country).
I dont have the time for sarcasm anymore. No I wasnt. These are harsh times we live in. Your in north Cali , I'm in beautiful Beverly NJ (Beautiful if you like being the 12% of the white population). Surviving is important. Trust me your talking to someone that shouldve been dead 3 years ago. Believe it or not... between WB and TRUEWDT ... doing pretty good. Just hang in there, do what you have to do and when people see you are working hard to do that things improve. People do notice. And if they Dont... make them notice.
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
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Jan 12, 2010
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#14
I dont have the time for sarcasm anymore. No I wasnt. These are harsh times we live in. Your in north Cali , I'm in beautiful Beverly NJ (Beautiful if you like being the 12% of the white population). Surviving is important. Trust me your talking to someone that shouldve been dead 3 years ago. Believe it or not... between WB and TRUEWDT ... doing pretty good. Just hang in there, do what you have to do and when people see you are working hard to do that things improve. People do notice. And if they Dont... make them notice.
Alright now I officially have no idea what you're talking about.
 

DJ Evel Ed

MayYourCumCrustedCocksBeConstantlyCoveredInCunt
Nov 30, 2003
2,601
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613
Up your ass!
#18
Mister we could use a man like Herbert Hoover again!