I agree. But there are people who have plenty of power to change their circumstances and instead, choose not to. I don’t have a problem with panhandlers, I have a problem with panhandlers who chase me, yell at me and threaten me and my child because I don’t have any change left to give them.
Just the other day there was a man holding a sign with words on it way too small to even read, leaning on one crutch! Wonder where he picked that up from?
I may sound superior and that’s ok with me because I’ve not been handed a silver spoon in my life either but I also agree with this sentiment above. I also have a problem with panhandlers and homeless who kill people for money like the one who just beheaded a young college girl and two elderly people who were walking in a park trail because he thought they owed him their lives and money. The ones who are down on their luck are few and far between and don’t make it their life’s goal to be a bum. I would be interested to know how many that feel so offended by some of our comments would gladly take these people into their own homes for awhile? I bet not too many. If you do, do so at your own risk.
You need to walk a mile in someone’s moccasins before you can judge them.
Guess it is my turn to offer my 2cents worth. We only occasionallg get panhandlers around here, and they always stand at the side of the road on the subzero days with signs asking for money. We never see them in the summer. I have to agree that is is hard to judge others unless we have been there. But I do think that there are plenty of people who are on the streets and panhandling, stealing etc, that make no effort to get themselves to a better place. I work in a hospital, and it never fails to amaze me at how much a lot of the homeless people that come in drink. I mean, how can you afford 2 cases of beer and 2 packs of cigerettes a day, but eat only once a week. (I completely understand addiction and have no desire to start a debate over it!) I always feel empethy for these people, but have no sympathy to offer someone who has made bad choice over bad choice to bring their life to this point. Now, the mom who is living in her car with her kids to escape an abusive husband, she gets my sympathy.
Anyway, as I said that is just my 2 cents!
I don’t think any of us are talking about the people who are geniunely down on their luck and wanting to get out of that type of situation, frankly I’d be surprised to hear something like that come out of anyone’s mouth. I am, however not going to be guilted into feeling sorry for people who choose that lifestyle and made to feel like a “big ol’ meanie” because my views are different from a select few. If that lumps me into the elitist or superiority group then so be it.
Yeah there are some people who are truly down on their luck, but when you see the same person in the same spot with the same sad story over the course of several years you have to realize they are just too damn lazy to work.
I have offered to buy some of these people a meal many times. Once in a great while one will accept it, but most only want the cash. It’s an industry, plain and simple.
[B][SIZE=3]This is a touchy subject so I’d like everyone to step back and take a deep breath and think before you speak. Thank you. [/SIZE][/B]
How ironic. I just got back from volunteering at the local soup kitchen. A fine crowd of people in need I saw. None of which needed any props. There are bad apples in every class from the very top to the very bottom. The amount a person has in the bank does not determine if they are good or bad, There are some very bad rich people out there and some very bad poor.
It is what is in your heart that makes you shine. We can only pray for those in need and take care of ours.
This has been interesting to read. In my area (very small town) there aren’t any-but when I go to the nearest big city, they are at almost every street light. I have given money to some when I have it-especially the man who was selling beaded (plastic pony beads) key chains by the side of the road at the light. I was so impressed that he actually had made something to sell in return for his “pay” that I happily purchased one-and used it for a long time.
But I have learned to be wary. I had gone downtown with my kids to take them to the library I think, and there was a fairly clean looking older man on the side of the road at a stop-light. He asked me for money, and I truly didn’t have any, and told him so. He started yelling at me, cussing at me (my 4 kids, including a baby with me) and calling me a liar-I was scared!! Thank God the light changed-we was able to escape without harm, but it really changed my perspective.
It’s sad, but this made me much less likely to stop and help because of the ones who might be dangerous. My heart goes out to those who really need help, because I know they are out there; but I intend to be careful about who I do give to.
Like Misty, I offer food if asked for money. Most people are extremely appreciative.
We’ve made donations of time, food, and money to our local shelters and organizations. Many of these places specifically ask that donations [B]not[/B] be given directly to individuals.
[COLOR=black]I think that you have to judge each situation as they happen. I have said no about as many tines as I have given. I usually give what I have in my pocket or tell them that I see them when I leaving the store (I never go in my purse with them looking). I have to trust that they are going to put the money to good use. I have scaled back on my giving however. I was once in Office Depot buying supplies for my students when a man (not dress badly) came in an asked those of us standing in line for money. One man stated that the store was taking applications. The beggar yelled that he wasn’t trying to get a job. He stated that he wasn’t going to work for the “white man.” We all thought that is was ironic that he had no problem begging from all of the African American’s in the line. Most of us had two jobs. Again, we have to take each situation as they come.[/COLOR]
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Dude, you’re awesome.
Yes he is!
Keep your distance from these people, some of them are dangerous.
And harder to get rid of then a Lot Lizard, eh Mason?
We have them up here, too. Some of them are obnoxious. Our friend, who is a cop, says that they are dropped off out of a truck each morning and that they don’t need our money. He says they have a good income, and the dirt comes off with the shabby clothes at night. I’m sure there are some who are true travelers, and need some cash. However, if they’re smoking and have better shoes on then I do, no way. BTW, I think it’s a shoddy trick to use children, like some of them do.
This guy was just a harmless, down on his luck fellow too.
I’m a lifelong Chicagoan, and I do see some of the same people in the same spot when I go to work (I work in the downtown area, where there’s a lot of tourist traffic) but I also do run across the person who really does need a couple of bucks to get home or something.
That being said, I admit my own prejudice towards panhandlers. Too often I’ve tried to offer food instead of change and have been cussed for my efforts. When I see the same guy every day wearing better clothes than me, and smoking (at $8 a pack!) it makes me seethe to think he’s probably clearing more than I am annually w/o doing much besides acting the part of a poor young lad, who is down on his luck for a few hours a day.
I’ve had some rough times, and had been homeless once but I didnt resort to panhandling. Stupid pride I guess? But its hard to be kind some days, especially when so many people seem to be just out there skimming by while i bust my tail daily for the money I earn.
sigh there’s no happy medium on this topic I know, I just wish I wasn’t so suspicious of motives when someone asks for a hand out. :gah:
I don’t like to give people money if they use it to abuse their bodies with drugs and alcohol.
How can one tell if a panhandler will use the money for good, for themselves?
Cypher, I agree with you. I offer food, etc., but get rejected for that.
I was also on welfare, TWICE, but,only temporarily. I worked my way out of that. I felt it to be a mark against my character, if I decided to let someone else pay for my way in life, and it didn’t teach my children anything good, like, self sufficiency, graduating from school, learning how to deal with tough times without resorting to giving up and letting the government wipe your nose.
I also work for the money I get.
Your suspicions of the motives of others is well grounded, since many people insist on claiming they are victims, and that they can’t contribute anything useful to their lives, and, they take the money and inject themselves with drugs, have careless, illicit sex, preferring to abuse themselves rather than rejecting the depravities of society.
You just never know where your money is going, unless you, personally, can follow up on it.
AMEN AND AMEN, stitchwitch! Thank you for posting this!
And, if YOU get paid under the counter, you will end up in jail!
You’re a decent, law abiding, tax paying citizen of America, and yet, you will be mercilessly hounded by the tax people if you don’t declare every dollar YOU make.
A violent encounter? How awful! Being harassed by a transient?
Where were the police?
I had a frightening encounter in seattle, and the police NEVER showed up! I’ll never go back to Seattle, the place is chock full of
people hanging around waiting for a handout.
Now, here where I live, I did hand a man a box of food, and he was nice, and accepted it. I have NO problem with giving people food, shelter, etc., if they need it.
If they are truly, truly unable to work, or take care of themselves, then, that’s when FAMILY should help out. FIRST.
If the family is unwilling or unable, then the government should help out.
Encouraging homelessness and panhandling, and giving drug users free needles, smacks of someone having an inferiority complex, and needing to keep their boot on the backs of homeless people, keeping them down, so they can always have someone who “needs them”.
Kind of like the mother who never cuts the apron strings. Very sick.