[Ed. – Paper tries to inject a humanitarian tone with its headline ‘The human catastrophe of homelessness hits the shores of Malibu, and some try to offer a helping hand,’ but see how many hours it takes residents of this toney community to give these invaders the boot.]
Wherever there’s a public library, there are homeless people taking shelter, and this is true in Malibu.
Perry Thomas, who said he’s a U.S. Army vet known as “The Real,” was wheeling his belongings into the Civic Center library Tuesday morning. He told me he sleeps on Surfrider Beach.
“It’s about as safe as any other place,” he said.
In a way it’s odd that destitute people would settle down in one of the most affluent areas in the country — a place where there is no affordable housing, no shelter and very few services.
On the other hand, if you’re homeless, why not at least enjoy your surroundings?
“I love the weather,” said Bill Witter, a Pennsylvania native who was badly beaten near the Civic Center almost two years ago by another homeless man. Witter had numerous broken bones and a long recovery, and is now in a Santa Monica shelter while he waits for housing, but he hangs out in Malibu by day.
Sade Bryan was crying outside the library entrance and claimed it was allergy. But tears streamed down her face, and it was nothing Claritin could fix.