I unexpectedly (and reluctantly) moved back to my hometown. I unexpectedly fell for an old high school classmate, and he unexpectedly proposed to me. We unexpectedly found out I was pregnant, and we got married sooner than expected. Now, we're experiencing the unexpected daily...the good, the bad, the funny, the frustrating. Read all about it...

Friday, December 17, 2010

I Helped Feed a Man

He came up to my car. He told me he was hungry. I handed him $2.00 in quarters.
He said, "Thank you, and have a Merry Christmas."
I said, "Same to you."
Then I prayed for him to receive more blessings than cold shoulders.

Other people might not do the same because they'd think...maybe he's addicted to drugs, and he should be putting money towards feeding himself than getting high. Others might also say that it's his own fault that, for some reason, he's on the streets begging, and he shouldn't get any kind of attention because he brought this situation on himself. People might think there are plenty of places he could go. There are soup kitchens and shelters. He needs to help himself. Try a little harder. But maybe he did try, and tried and tried again.

If You Don't Know, Now You Know...

 Unemployment hiked up homelessness, and so shelters are over capacity in an attempt to accomodate everyone in need. Some shelters have to turn people away. It is even harder to accomplish this in the winter months! Here are a few links of news stories regarding this issue between 2009 and 2010:

Shelters lose funding, are forced to close or reduce services and beds, sending the homeless back to square one. This is like a double whammy for those who sought help because they were affected by the recession. Again, articles between 2009 and 2010:
On some level, we all could use a hand out, a boost, a little "suttin, suttin" to get us through. I would hope it wouldn't matter if I were homeless, on drugs, supposedly "not trying hard enough" to make my life better. I would hope it wouldn't matter if the reason I couldn't find work was because of a criminal record or because I have a drinking problem. I would hope someone would figure out a way to help me somehow, even if it is putting some pocket change in my hand.  It is also important to recognize the new faces of poverty: former teachers, receptionists, fast food workers, etc. Working class people.

The bottom line is that even if I were out on the streets, whatever my history, I'd essentially still be a human being trying to survive in this world...a whole lot like you. I don't think it's fair to judge or blame the men and women on the streets who may need a bite to eat. In this economy, you could be next.

After the gentleman and I exchanged our wishes for a happy holiday, I drove off a happier person, and I am confident he walked away a little happier too.

No comments:

Post a Comment