Not Helping: Watch a Politician Take a Sledgehammer to a Bunch of Homeless People's Carts

His vigilante approach terrifies the vulnerable and disadvantaged people of Hawaii.
Nov 20, 2013· 0 MIN READ
Shaya Tayefe Mohajer is TakePart's News Editor.

If there are any problems a sledgehammer can't fix, homelessness is probably chief among them.

That didn't stop Hawaii state Sen. Tom Brower from trying. His aggressive and fairly scary idea of stopping homelessness in paradise was to destroy about 30 shopping carts used by homeless people, as we see him doing in the video here.

Homelessness in Hawaii has been an ugly problem that local businesses and rights groups have clashed over: Vagrants are not what tourists come to the island to see, but the state's cost of living is the highest in the country. Proposed fixes to the problem have included offering homeless people a free ticket to leave the island. Across the country, more than 630,000 people are homeless, and an estimated 17,000 live in Hawaii.

Since going on his smashing spree, the Democrat from Waikiki has decided his mission is accomplished because he has raised awareness, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. But maybe he's just realizing that homeless activists weren't exaggerating about how traumatic his actions have been for the homeless community.

The video shows Brower talking to a homeless man about destroying shopping carts; the homeless man tells him it is not cool.

"To see someone just going, just banging on stuff like that, it was very scary for me," the homeless man tells Brower.

Scary is right.