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Mike Pfau, Fargo, Published August 12 2012

Panhandling in Fargo is not a major issue

Fargo has decided to move forward with more restrictions on where one can panhandle. The fines include a $50 infraction charge for panhandling in the restricted areas and a $500 fine for aggressive panhandling. Is Fargo so desperate for cash that it has stooped to such a level as to fine something as minuscule as this?

In the end, has this become such an issue that it requires attention? It is your choice to give panhandlers your extra change or not. So either do it or don't, and move on with your life.

Fargo has got to stop trying to create this utopian suburban image. We are a city on the grow – with that, there will be more crime and more panhandling. If officers are seriously wasting their time with this, police departments in other cities would ridicule them. Besides, where is the logic in fining those who we all know have very little money in the first place?

So residents of Fargo and Moorhead, just stay in your SUVs and focus on your own life. And to the Fargo Police Department: Instead of busting panhandlers and 14-year-olds, focus on thefts and assaults, like a real officer would.