Although according to official statistics nobody in Korea is really poor – at least no-one worth speaking of – collecting nuts and berries from parks has long been a source of nutrition for the country’s homeless, who forage in the wild before sleeping out in the open for lack of anything else to consume or anywhere else to stay due to Korea’s enlightened social security policies.
Officially, the Government say the new ‘nuts and berries’ directive is aimed at preserving acorns, which are needed by “squirrels and bears” - even though the only bears in Korea are the ones held in captivity and farmed for meat and virility rituals. But unofficially a Government spokesman admitted to us that the threat of jail terms are intended to solve Korea’s chronic homelessness by finally removing these embarrassing individuals from public view, or starving them to death as an act of kindness, preferably before the G20 summit is held in the capital.
Fearing that the homeless may find alternative food sources, Seoul authorities have announced fines for people who let their dogs off their leashes in the city’s parks.
While in future jail terms as long as three years will be imposed on individuals found picking up acorns from the ground, the Government has promised that politicians caught embezzling funds, and Chaebol owners making corrupt payments, will continue to receive suspended sentences or escape punishment entirely in line with Korean cultural traditions and Constitutional guarantees that protect the rich and powerful.
Acorn pickers to be slapped fines
Owners of unleashed pets to be fined 50,000 won
S Korea activists use G20 to highlight bear farms