Nevada’s Toothless Tiger? New Laws Granting Human Rights For the Homeless.

An angry kitten
Toothless tiger doesn't suit? Maybe you'd prefer the term 'attack kitten.'

Well, the State spirit appears willing, but the local flesh seems to be weak. As far as the facts are concerned, even state legislators in Nevada would appear to be onside, promoting the Homeless Persons Bill of Rights. Endorsing such an egalitarian spirit, quite possibly everyone in Nevada may be in favour of granting homeless people the same rights as everybody else.

There’s one slight hiccup in this apparent Nevada love-in. It’s the widespread concern, expressed via their lobbyists, that cities, towns as well as their law enforcement: that people who are homeless are entitled to the same human rights as everybody else, just so long as they do not claim them.

Fine, you can have rights. But you can’t demand them! There appears to be nobody ready to endorse a Bill of Rights that might allow those without the rights to take action to receive them (suing local government, or the police, for example).

Can we expect to see more of this civic cleverness nationally, even worldwide, as countries sign on to the principles of universal human rights, even as they proceed with a legal ace up their sleeves?

It would seem to be a civic version of having your cake and eating it — that is to say, having your piety without honouring it1.

Read more about Nevada’s impending cleverness, both its earnest beginnings, as well as its current watered-down state in the reno gazette journal: ‘Homeless Persons Bill of Rights’ faces opposition from cities, counties, law enforcement


  1. 171 countries are State Parties to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which includes the right to adequate housing (Article 11). This indicats a greater commitment to housing rights than in the United States, which is a signatory to the Covenant, but is not a State Party.