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An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

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An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Clark_Griswold » Thu Aug 02, 2012 3:13 am

Just a note for anyone traveling across US HWY 160 across the Navajo Reservation this summer. US 160 runs from the 4 corners monument to US 89, just west of Tuba City. Perhaps, due to me living on it and traveling it everyday, I find this very annoying, but you might like to be aware of it. The alcoholic begging situation is especially bad in Kayenta, AZ. I can not speak to the small villages east to Colorado and New Mexico, or south on US 191, but Tuba City seems to be much safer and have a substantially lower incidence of encounters. I base this off of personal experience at the Tuuvi Store, Shell Gas Station, and McDonald's in Tuba, VS. the Burger King, McDonald's, Basha's Grocery Store, and Chevron in Kayenta. I live near Kayenta, and simply never seem to visit one of these places and not have a drunk beg from me, or witness one doing that to other (mostly white) visitors. They seldom engage the Navajo, as they know what they are. My experience in Tuba has been one with zero encounters of beggars in the last year.

Most will lie and tell you they are going home, need food, whatever. A popular one is asking for money for, or for a direct purchase of tobacco, as they resell that for less money than it is worth, to get cash for the ever popular 40 oz malt liquor bottles. There are places in town for food, they are not hungry. Malnourished from long extended binders, but not hungry like a normal human being would be. Don't believe them or give in to their pressure for spare change.

I frequently see white tourists handing these people money and enabling the alcohol problem. Please do not do that. Buy no tobacco or resell-able items, if you must buy them something. Buy only food, and make sure they eat it in your presence, as some may (they do this) sell it to their "friends" at a reduced price to secure cash for booze. Realize if you do give them money, you are directly perpetuating the alcoholism and problems of the alcoholics which plague the decent Navajo that live in the town.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Marmaduke » Thu Aug 02, 2012 3:31 am

I frequently see white tourists handing these people money and enabling the alcohol problem.


Lionel, this type of problem happens all larger towns to the big cities. Beg for money to buy food and they spend it on alcohol and drugs. It is sad.

Do you think the Navajos would allow me to beg on their land. Free beer? I'm always in!

Sorry to detract from your thread just a little. But I totally agree with you. When I'm in SF I walk past them, they are in front of most strip malls at the traffic lights as you enter. I do not give them anything. A buddy of mine (this is a true story) was working in SF and would give 5 bucks to this beggar about every other day as he left the job site. We told Greg, hey he's buying dope or alcohol, you shouldn't do that. Greg responded that he thought that but there is a MacDonald's there and he walks into, "I've seen him". I said wow, that's a first. But Greg did think about this. The next time he watched the guy. He walked into Mac's and Greg waited. The guy came out with a pint of something in a brown bag. On the other side of Mac's there was a liquor store. He walked into and out the other side for appearance purposes, and went to buy his liquor. Greg stopped giving him the 5 bucks.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Clark_Griswold » Thu Aug 02, 2012 4:13 am

True, It is a problem of many larger towns, but Kayenta is a town with more elevation than humans. The issue is more acute with the exclusiveness with which "outsiders" are targeted. Still, it never ceases to amaze me when I see naive people give these people money. The veteran story really brings out the wallets, and these guys know that. Let me tell you something , with their liver function, there aren't any Korean War vets begging, and barely and Vietnam Vets at this point. Most won't get past 40. Whatever.

Regardless, I live with it, and have made decisions not to visit the McDonald's due to the problem, when I otherwise might have. It's different when you see it all the time, and when you run into the occasional aggressive ones who don't take "no" for an answer. Please don't feed the problem. Spay and neuter your drunks, and don't give them money.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Kahuna » Thu Aug 02, 2012 4:39 am

... have made decisions not to visit the McDonald's


Appears that is real issue here. You can't have your daily Big Mac, Super Sized Fries and Soda fix.... Damn life sucks.

PS: WTF, is that the extent of this town, BK, Chevron Mart, MD's and a local taco joint?

No wonder everyone is frkn drunk.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Clark_Griswold » Fri Aug 03, 2012 1:20 am

A clinic, a school, a new prison to be built, and government offices of various kind. It's like communism in the USA. I can't really explain it any other way.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Kahuna » Fri Aug 03, 2012 2:59 am

What is communism about a clinic, a school, a new prison to be built, and government offices.

Better those than rows of fast food joints that will just add to the obesity and booze begging factor in that area.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby lcarreau » Fri Aug 03, 2012 5:29 am

I get "hit up" much more frequently in the larger towns and more populated areas. I never give money to anybody I don't know, or haven't met in one of my previous lives.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Clark_Griswold » Sat Aug 04, 2012 2:21 am

A5RP wrote:What is communism about a clinic, a school, a new prison to be built, and government offices?

Better those than rows of fast food joints that will just add to the obesity and booze begging factor in that area.

None of those things are, that was an answer to your question:
WTF, is that the extent of this town, BK, Chevron Mart, MD's and a local taco joint?
It just wasn't written very clearly as I cut down most of what I wrote as an initial response, as the issues surrounding the high level of government control, the high unemployment rate, the sad economy and so on, are all aside from the point when advising people to be aware of the high level of begging that is getting annoying to me, and asking people to not give them money. The reservation is about as close to one can get to living in the old Soviet Union, in the United States, but again, sort of not the point here.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby lcarreau » Sat Aug 04, 2012 2:33 am

Reminds me of a time when I was fortunate enough to visit Moab, Utah's "other arches."

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Excuse me. I believe another government meeting is being called to order ... :D

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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Kahuna » Sat Aug 04, 2012 4:10 am

Lionel wrote: The reservation is about as close to one can get to living in the old Soviet Union, in the United States...


Who's fault is that?
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby lcarreau » Sat Aug 04, 2012 5:41 am

A5RP wrote:
Lionel wrote: The reservation is about as close to one can get to living in the old Soviet Union, in the United States...


Who's fault is that?


I didn't know there were any faults in that part of Arizona. Now, if you take a look at the San Francisco Peak Volcanic field ...
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Clark_Griswold » Sat Aug 04, 2012 3:48 pm

Actually, the Kayenta area has lots of faults. The Comb Monocline, Black Mesa, Skeleton Mesa, and the other various mesas, cliffs and features indicate the area is relatively active geologically. Simply driving 160 past Tsegi Canyon can give an indication of the geologic diversity of the area, where literally on each side of the highway there are two distinct formations separated by millions of years. Red Navajo Sandstone on one side, white Mesa Verde sandstone and gray Mancos shale on the other side. Also, one can't drive a dirt road, or any road out of town, without noticing the numerous discarded 40 oz malt liquor bottles. The drunks that pass through were I live love to discard them on the street and by peoples fences. Sometimes, they are nice enough to smash them.
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Re: An advisory for those traveling US 160 across AZ

Postby Alex Wood » Sat Aug 04, 2012 6:00 pm

I have driven crossed that section of the res 20 times in the past year and while it is bad all over, I think you are right Lionel that is especially bad in Kayenta. That McDonalds is notorious. It seems like most of the time they are asking for money to get to Page. I was fortunate enough to actually spend 7 hours in Kayenta with a sick friend last month. That clinic is quite lovely, for what it is worth.
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