In politics, you have to know who your enemies are.
Half of Eugene residents are renters, oppressed by low wages and high rents. Some of us keep falling off the bottom into homelessness, and every year some die on the streets.
On the other side of the class war are most of the business people and homeowners, who don’t want us in “their” neighborhoods. They oppose both homeless shelter and apartments.
Councilor Emily Semple is our enemy, along with the rest of the Eugene City Council. Her recent description of Eric Jackson’s homeless protest camp as “terrorists” shows who she really cares about, and it’s not poor people struggling to survive but business people.
Worse are her council votes, such as the one to criminalize camping in the planting strip between the sidewalk and street, enabling cops to jail Jackson. That’s just unforgivable. Like the rest of the council, Semple has dragged her feet on creating homeless shelter and affordable housing.
We need a new City Council. Three new people are running, and at least two of them renters. We need to know in detail what they propose to do if elected, and I hope Eugene Weekly will give us that information.
We must not elect another bait-and-switch pretender like Semple. She should do the right thing and resign.