San Francisco Cleaned Up For Xi Visit. Now, Things Are Back to Normal.

AP Photo/Eric Risberg

If there’s anything that indicates a politician or group of politicians isn’t taking something seriously, it’s when they apply a Band-Aid over a problem when it’s noticeable, and then let things go back to the way they were. That’s what happened in San Francisco when the city cleaned up their homeless encampments and open-air drug bazaars during the visit of the Chinese dictator Xi. Now, according to one San Francisco business owner, it’s once more business as usual in the city by the Bay.

Less than a month after Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, San Francisco is reverting to a den of homelessness and drugs, according to locals.
“It’s recognizable. San Francisco, same as before. Anyone they pushed out of important zones has just slowly crept right back in,” Crossfit Golden Gate Gym owner Danielle Rabkin said on “Varney & Co” Tuesday. 
In November, President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jingping met during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit (APEC) in San Francisco for a much-anticipated face-to-face — the first since the two leaders met in Indonesia in November 2022.

You can see contemporaneous RedState coverage of the clean-up and the meeting at these links.

The business owner in question, Danielle Rabkin, spoke with Fox Business’s Stuart Varney about the debacle.

But what’s really egregious about all this is the California governor’s response to the whole thing. The impeccably coiffed Governor Newsom admitted that the whole thing was a show:

Prior to the event, the host city was cleaned up for the arrival of foreign leaders, including President Xi. 
Gov. Gavin Newsom, D-Calif., was criticized on social media after admitting that San Francisco, nationally infamous for homelessness, timed a massive cleanup effort ahead of the important U.S.-China summit. 
“I know folks are saying, ‘Oh they’re just cleaning up this place because all those fancy leaders are coming to town.’ That’s true, because it’s true,” Newsom said last month at the unveiling of a new program to plant trees in urban neighborhoods as part of his Clean California initiative launched in 2021. 

Oh, well, at least these urban neighborhoods will get new trees, which will likely be used as firewood by the throngs of homeless people and drug dealers.

Newsom, I get. He’s only marginally functional as a governor (I’m probably being too generous.) If he were half as smart as he thinks he is, he’d be twice as smart as he really is, and the sad thing is that he really seems to think he’s doing well.

It’s the business owners and residents of San Francisco I don’t get. Ms. Rabkin, talking about her city officials, had this to say:

Rabkin added that city leaders should stop giving the homeless the option to pitch their tents and live on the streets.
“It’s not an option to pitch a tent and sleep on the street. It’s not hygienic, it’s not humane and it’s not right for the law-abiding taxpayers.”

It’s not right. It hasn’t been right for years. It’s intolerable. It’s downright medieval. The ancient Greeks and Romans knew better than to allow this sort of thing. Why San Francisco (and other cities) allow it is mind-boggling. But I would ask Danielle Rabkin this: “Who did you vote for in the last municipal elections? Whose candidacies, if any, did you support? If you voted for a Democrat, why would you expect anything to change?”


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