Badass Old Man Gets Arrested For Feeding the Homeless, Does It More

In Depth

You will never be as much of a badass as 90-year-old Ft. Lauderdale, Florida resident Arnold Abbott. I don’t care if you travel back in time to kick the crap out of the Nazis with a lightsaber while riding a hoverunicorn — he still wins.

Arnold, you see, was arrested twice last week, first on Sunday and then again on Wednesday. His crime? Feeding the homeless. Florida police,* showing that keen sense of appropriate action we’ve come to know from them, ordered Abbott to drop the plate of food he was holding as if it was a weapon. You might be wondering how this is even possible and what authority figure would condone it, but Florida’s Governor is Rick Scott, and Rick Scott is basically Scott Walker in an elaborate Mr. Clean cosplay.** Since being released, Abbott, who has spent the last 20 years feeding the homeless through his own non-profit Love Thy Neighbor, has said he’s just going to go right back to feeding the homeless. He then donned sunglasses while calmly flicking a lit cigarette onto a gasoline trail and walked away from the explosion without reacting [citation needed].

Here is a dramatic representation of all of Arnold Abbott’s fucks:

OK, a clarification: the law doesn’t technically state “no one can feed the homeless,” because not even the craziest Tea Partier thinks that sort of measure would actually be regarded as just peachy by any human being with a functioning soul. What the law actually states is that sites for feeding the homeless must be 500 feet away from each other and from any residential properties, because ew, clearly we can’t have any of those poors dirtying up their neighborhood with their “need to eat.” We might catch poverty off them! Think of the children!

It’s also not the first law of its kind: since 2010, there has been a 47 percent increase in cities passing similar legislation. If you don’t understand why these laws are some classist bullshit, I don’t even know what to say to you at this point. Abbott, meanwhile, faces up to 60 days in jail or a $500 fine if convicted, although I can’t imagine the judge who’d throw a 90-year-old man in jail for two months for feeding the homeless would have a long career ahead of them.

The real question is, why didn’t Arnold Abbott run for Governor of Florida? This man is my new hero. If none of you take the time to photoshop that lead image into a Deal With It gif, I am going to be VERY disappointed in the Internet.

If you’re able to, please donate to Love Thy Neighbor or organizations like it. In addition to feeding the needy, it’ll give a giant middle finger to any legislator who’d pass this sort of bill.

* Yes, I realize you could basically substitute any police department from any state in the country for this sentence.

** I’ll give him this: he’s not as punchable as Scott Walker. This is because no one is as punchable as Scott Walker. Look at that smug douche face. Don’t you just want to punch it? Jesus. What were we talking about?

Image via AP.

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