Rosie O'Donnell, the daytime talk-show host, has been raising eyebrows lately with her increasingly vitriolic on-air attacks on New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. She is especially offended by his latest efforts to get the homeless off the streets. "He thinks he, like, runs the world."
Of course, O'Donnell is free to say whatever she wants. And her political views are well known. She recently hosted a fund-raiser for Senate candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton.
The problem is that O'Donnell's attacks are largely based on her apparent ignorance of Giuliani's policies and the laws of New York. For example, New York City is the only municipality in the country that guarantees shelter for any homeless person. . . . Now, Giuliani . . . is requiring that the able-bodied homeless be compelled to work in exchange for shelter and food. And he is challenging a long-standing policy . . . that forbids the city to pick up homeless people and put them in shelters when they are in danger of freezing to death on the streets.
These sensible proposals, which are strongly supported by residents, have been taken by O'Donnell and turned into talking points for Clinton. She asserts that Giuliani wishes to take children away from their homeless parents. . . . Not exactly. What the mayor has proposed is that the city determine whether it is healthy for small children to remain with their (alcoholic/drug-addicted/mentally ill) parents on the streets, especially those who refuse shelter or work. . . .