There is a simultaneously hilarious and frightening article in this week’s City Paper about parking enforcement troubles east of the Anacostia river. It seems that lax parking enforcement enforcement on that side of town has led to a lot of unpaid tickets. At first glance, it’s a no-brainer to rake in some cash by increasing the rate of booting in these areas to force some the offenders to pay their tickets.
It seems that this low-hanging fruit is not so easily picked. For the typical low-income bootee in a low-income neighborhood, it is quite possible that the cost of paying for the parking infractions is greater than the cost of the vehicle. In that case, a little elbow grease and a crowbar are a more attractive method of restoring one’s transportation than a trek down to Judiciary Square with the checkbook. Officially so far, the city has lost 52 boots! In some cases, the parking officers have been threatened with violence as they were performing their duties.
I wonder if the repulsed boot attack has forced those parking workers to return to their roots over in Northwest. Hedda and I have noticed a pretty sizable uptick in boots around our neighborhood. There was one on M street the other day, and two more over as many weeks in front of the building across the street from us.
It’s of no concern to us, of course, since neither of us own a vehicle. In fact, we like to point and laugh at the vicitms of The Boot. I was once taught by a really bad movie: You don’t want The Boot.