The Korean and Vietnam War Memorial, a 100 foot black granite wall etched with the names of the brave soldiers that gave their lives for their country, has turned from just a place to pay respect to fallen soldiers into a popular bathroom spot for the local homeless population says one lawmaker. Rep. Bob McDermott (R-HI) said that human feces has been found at the war memorial on several occasions has made it a priority to put an end to this behavior to ensure the veterans that lost their lives get the respect they deserve.
McDermott was shocked to find the monument covered in human waste while visiting last week.
“It’s human waste. Several piles along with clothing and needles and other trash. It’s just terrible,” he said. “The homeless are nesting there and defecating there because it provides a degree of concealment.”
Photos of the memorial were posted to social media to bring awareness to the issue. When McDermott returned to the monument earlier this week he was disappointed to find that not only had the situation not improved, it had gotten worse.
“This is our capitol. It’s our showpiece. If it was done in the elevator you can be sure it would be cleaned up. It’s 200 feet away. Why do we miss it,” he told reporters.
The State Department of Public Safety said that the State Capitol building grounds are regularly patrolled by state deputy sheriffs. Unfortunately, due to the landscape and design of the monument, they have had trouble catching anyone in the act.
“If deputies find anyone sleeping in a public area, they will offer assistance,” the DPS said in a public statement. “Most people they have encountered move on voluntarily. Anyone caught in the act of breaking the law will be cited and/or possibly arrested.”
McDermott sent a letter to Governor David Ige’s office to bring the issue to his attention so it can be rectified. A spokesperson for his office claims the letter has not yet arrived.