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Residents of San Francisco are now documenting squalor of city's homelessness epidemic

Fed-up citizens are exposing appalling effects of indigent encampments amid city's decay

Mercury Radio Arts Illustration

San Francisco has been battling an ongoing homelessness epidemic for years, but mounting piles of human feces in its streets have become intolerable for many residents — causing citizens to launch their own campaigns exposing the stinky (and dangerous) troubles of the Golden City.

What are the details?

Disgusted business owners and residents are using social media to show the magnitude of the tech-town's indigent encampments in hopes that officials will do more to end rampant public drug use and defecation on the sidewalks.

Restauranteur Adam Mesnick, who resides in San Francisco's South of Market — or SoMa — neighborhood, created the Twitter handle @bettersoma two years ago and uses it to document the squalor in his surroundings.

On Thursday, Mesnick posted the image of a man steadying himself on a street curb — pants on the ground with buttocks fully exposed, relieving himself in broad daylight. According to the photo caption, the perpetrator isn't even homeless.

CNN published excerpts of an interview Friday with an anonymous longtime resident who, like Mesnick, regularly posts appalling images from everyday strolls trying to convince city leaders to be more proactive in ending San Francisco's ongoing crisis.

From the account called @CleanUpWestSOMA, the San Franciscan re-posted a video from October of a woman injecting herself with a syringe while sitting on a sidewalk after a police patrol slowly drove past. One hashtag accompanying the clip was "#Someones daughter."

The CleanUpWestSOMa account also documented several excrement discoveries, but sensors the images with poop emojis to spare viewers while tagging Mayor London Breed and other city officials.

Tech CEO Geoffrey Woo became a citizen-reporter of happenstance last week, after posting a video taken outside his 38 Mason Street office of a man being stomped in the head.

Woo is now campaigning to encourage San Francisco Police to step up its enforcement, while accusing his fellow citizens of paying more attention to national politics than their own city streets.

Anything else?

A recent article from the New York Times outlined the fears other cities have of becoming consumed by "San Francisco-ization," amid concerns of high wage disparities, long commutes for the middle class, rising homeless populations, and rampant drug use.

One last thing…
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