Source: Los Angeles Times
On January 13, 2003 the Los Angeles Times reported that "across the nation, advocates for the homeless have squared off with city officials over everything from sleeping on city sidewalks to outdoor toilets, but in Southern California the debate now centers on... the distribution of food in public... Advocates for the poor see the food handouts as humanitarianism at its best, an effort by charitable groups to fulfill a responsibility to the poor that governments have failed to meet... The help comes from a rainbow of people and a melange of faiths -- Muslims, Christians and Bahai, Korean Americans and Latinos, whites and African Americans -- all drawn by skid row's need and the desire to fill it... 'As a Muslim, [Naim Shah Jr.] sees helping as an obligation. 'Whatever faith you have enforces basic principles of charity; these are maxims of religion,' he said."