the term “paracaidistas” is Spanish for parachutists.  That is the nickname for organized groups of squatters in Mexico, who often start building cheap tar paper shelters on commercial land, often doing this under cover of night, hence they parachute in and are present by morning.  These are cheap, poor communities at the start, but can evolve into surprisingly stable and effective communities.  This process may take ten-fifteen years.  What lessons might this movement hold for us?  First, this practice is accepted and squatter movements exist all over the world.  In our nation, this is illegal and not tolerated and such squatters have been evicted.  Also, a successful homelessness movement needs to be a group effort.  That way, the stronger members can help to carry the weaker members.  A political ideology can help such a movement, and in the case of these Mexican squatters, their communities frequently carry stencil images of Emiliano Zapata, on the walls of their communities.


The multi-blog is a blog that seeks to attract a broad audience.  The creator has a background that includes academics and teaching although more recently in real estate.  He has taught on-line courses before, so the design of this blog will reflect that to some extent.  The blog will revolve around the very general topic of social issues.  This is a very general category, and I may choose to alter, expand or narrow this topic from time to time.  Hopefully, with such broad themes, the blog can attract people of varying backgrounds or occupational interests.  I will have some suggested areas below to encourage posting, but if you want to post on something different, feel free to do so.  Or if you wish, just look at the posts.  This is NOT a course and you will not be graded!

I intend to select a different topic every month.  This month’s topic is homelessness.  You may post whatever you want, but if you wish, you can use some of the suggested topics shown below.  A post can be an opinion post or a research post, or some combination of the two.  If you do research, which most likely will be online, feel free to include a citation to tell us where the research came from.  But this is optional.  If you comment on one of the suggested research or opinion areas, feel free to mention that you comment is based on something you remember or might have heard.  Any source of information can be valuable.  Feel free to respond to someone else’s post or to mine, or to lead such a discussion towards an entirely different area.  When you have such back and forth communication, this is known as a “threaded discussion.”

–Some possible opinion areas to post on:  1) The reasons for homelessness  2) The effectiveness of government homeless programs. 3) Possible solutions for homelessness  4) Homelessness and moral responsibility  5) Possible backgrounds of the homeless

–Of course you can do research on the above topics in addition to expressing an opinion.  The following research options can also be expressed in the form of an opinion:  1) The permanent homeless class  2) The chronic homeless class  3) The temporary homeless class  4) The number of homeless (state, U.S> world)  5) Organized homeless groups (either of the homeless themselves or advocates for the homeless)  6) 3D printing and the homeless  7) The law and homelessness  8) Homelessness and crime  9) The homeless in other countries

Or feel free to comment on any aspect not mentioned above!