Washington Budget

FILE - In this May 7, 2018, photo, tents used by homeless people are shown on either side of a sidewalk in Seattle with CenturyLink and Safeco Fields in the background. Washington Gov. Jay Inslee said Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2019, that his supplemental state budget proposes spending more than $300 million from the state's emergency budget reserve to add 2,100 shelter beds and provide other help to combat homelessness.\

To the editor — You published a Seattle opinion on the emergency of chronically homeless people. This complex issue is, in many ways, caused by government’s chronic bent toward “throwing money” at problems.

Welfare programs of the 1960 created a crisis of fatherless homes, ultimately doing more real harm. It is broadly established that family dysfunction and trauma drive folks to brokenness of spirit, addiction and homelessness. The state breaks families, who then break children, who then take on problems with drugs and mental illness.

What is the government’s response, in all its wisdom? Allowing ever-more access to ever-stronger drugs; to virtually dismantle the mental health care system; to expand the dependency has been shown repeatedly to slow or destroy the progress of those it claims to support. The real solution isn’t a free place to live. It’s the life change that cannot occur without long term personal one-on-one caring and love -- partnering and recognizing the value of that person and their ability to change.

All of God’s children have inherent value and are equally endowed by His promises. Giving stuff away for free is really just giving up on these people. They can do better, and we must do better.

KEITH MATHEWS

Selah