We read Matthew Owens “Broken windows” opinion piece in the Lost Coast Outpost yesterday. Ol’ Matthew real got us thinkin’ about his mentor. It struck us; we’ve been slackin’ it when it comes to giving Robin Arkley his full due of respect in one area; that’s allowing trespassers to camp free of charge on all on his unimproved properties.
We can already hear you asking what the heck we’re talking about. Arkley doesn’t support giving handouts or “catering” to the houseless in Humboldt, right? Wrong. Oh ya, he sounds all gruff and mean when speaks in public about the houseless, but he’s just trying to cover up what a big softy he is. When you take away government owned land and look at the land owned by the Arkleys or one of their many LLC’s, you’ll realize they are one of the top suppliers of land where people feel safe to set up camp.
Let’s go through some of the fine area’s he has supplied for years. First off, his Samoa property. People might remember that little chunk of land, since it’s where a heinous crossbow murder took place several years ago. There are acres of open land which have become quite the town for the houseless around Eureka. In fact, on any given day one can drive down the road and see the open and inviting land.
The next fine property that Robin has provided, free of charge to the houseless, is the famous Balloon Tract. Still the future home of the Marina Center (whatever that’s morphed into), this acreage has provided space for houseless people for over a decade. In fact, just down from the Eureka Rescue Mission is Arkleys version of a “Mission”. His version is an abandoned railroad building. Yes, when you’re driving down Second or First Streets, east of Commercial Street, take a look at the area containing all the old abandoned trains with graffiti on the side. Right next to those trains is an old building with….wait for it…….Broken Windows!
That building has housed many people over the years, and Rob & Cherie must really enjoy providing the service. Otherwise, he would have torn the building down!
As you travel the length of the Balloon Tract you’ll find it hard to see all the campers. The grass is regularly so high in the area, that only a person’s hair could be seen if they were standing at full height. That lack of taking care of his large properties is another way that Robin boldly declares, “Come sleep here. We have tall grass, holes in our fences, and broken windows to boot. Security National welcomes you!”
Of course, staying on these properties does come with some drawbacks. For instance, one of Robin’s properties on the 300 block of Broadway caught fire numerous times. Robin was willing to keep the skeleton of the building intact. After all, it was one of the county’s best drive thru drug depots! But the darn “Guberment” (City of Eureka) got in the way and demolished the building instead. Robin probably figured that was just another way the “liberals” could come after him, by demolishing this rat trap drug distribution center and regular flop house.
SO in the end, we have to hand it to Mr. Arkley. He is the king of private houseless land in Humboldt. However, it would be nice if he could provide some dumpsters and most important, some portable-toilets. After all, as conscientious as he is about protecting the environment, you would think he wouldn’t want human fecal matter and urine ruining right into the bay, right?