Author: James Shearer

  • Just in Time For the Holidays

    Just in Time For the Holidays

    Back in 1989 a man named Albert Turner aka “the Root Doctor” who was a major part of Martin Luther King’s Civil Rights movement spoke of a government that had no need for poor people. Those words probably never rang any truer than they do now. The Trump Administration recently hired Robert Marbut as the […]

  • Stealing the City From Under Our Feet

    Stealing the City From Under Our Feet

    When I came to Boston 40 years ago the first place I stayed was at the old Harbor Lights shelter on Shawmut Ave in the South End. Back then the South End was one of the few neighborhoods in Boston where a young black man could feel safe.  At the time Boston was still dealing […]

  • Stand up to state sponsored kidnapping

    Stand up to state sponsored kidnapping

    The other night I had a conversation with a close friend and comrade in the movement I’m involved in. She was reasonably upset because her daughter, who is in foster care, was removed from her foster home and nobody told her. It’s an ongoing struggle for her, her husband and her children who were taken […]

  • It’s the system, stupid.

    It’s the system, stupid.

    That’s what I have to tell myself whenever I come across a story like the one I’m about to tell you. A dear old friend of mine recently got housing – well, it’s really just a room in one of the few remaining rooming houses around here. It’s part of “Housing First” and when I […]

  • And then they came for…

    And then they came for…

    Last week Donald Trump’s Council on Economic Affairs released a report on homelessness that, like brings to mind his and his administration’s mindless rants about immigrants before last fall’s elections. The report at times reads more like invasion of the walking dead instead of how to address the needs of human beings. I’m not going […]

  • Addiction is a Disease

    Addiction is a Disease

    In recent weeks I have grown tired, and sometimes angry, at the way people who abuse drugs are being discussed; from the goings on down on methadone mile, to the lynch mobs posing as neighborhood meetings, to the outrageous videos and posts on Facebook from Bostonians, to politicians both in and running for office.  They’re […]

  • Violence on the Mile

    Last week was quite a busy week on what has become known as Methadone Mile, a line of city blocks that goes down Melina Cass Blvd., where Southampton Shelter and many other shelters for the homeless are located. For quite some time now, there have been complaints about people openly using drugs on the mile, […]

  • Are the Homeless Trump’s Next Target?

    Are the Homeless Trump’s Next Target?

    President Trump has been in the news once again for all the wrong reasons. He’s been attacking people of color and saying that they should all go back to where they came from, among other things, but there is one story that people and the media seem to have forgotten about.  “It’s a phenomena that […]

  • Reflections on the Poor People’s Congress

    Reflections on the Poor People’s Congress

    In June I attended  the Poor People’s Moral Action Congress in Washington DC where 1,000 poor people gathered from 40 states. The Congress is part of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, and it was emotional for me for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, the original Poor People’s Campaign […]

  • IDs For the Homeless are Common Sense

    IDs For the Homeless are Common Sense

    “Having an ID card is instrumental to giving folks pathways out of poverty,” says Molly Schulman, Community Organizer and Legislative Advocate with the Massachusetts Coalition For the Homeless. She, along with Associate Director Kelly Turley, are at the Massachusetts State House every day advocating on behalf of the homeless on everything from increasing funding for […]