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Old 05-30-2008, 08:51 AM   #11
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whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, you do unto me.



last sunday, as my wife and son and i walked through the city, we passed a homeless guy, laying in a pool of his bowels. i ignored him and quickened my step to be able to get in between and shield them from this harsh reality.

instead, my son stopped, smiled and waved to the guy and happily said "hiiii" , just like he does to everyone else that he sees.

it's made me re-examine myself a dozen times this past week. now, nyc has many programs to help every kind of homeless people that there are, and i pay a ton of taxes to help with these causes. so i don't really feel guilty that i don't give them money, or stop to give them food. there's lots of places for them to go if they don't or can't take care of their own lives.

but i do feel badly that i'd stopped looking at them as good people fallen on hard times. my boy reminded me of that.
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Old 05-30-2008, 09:44 AM   #12
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amy, I understand your dilemma. When it comes to inviting someone into your home to do some handy work use that gut instinct and don't make quick decisions. I know you know all this but I got a little chill running up my spine doing a dance at the nape of my neck. So, I had to voice it.

I work in our tiny downtown area. I see the same people every day and you can tell which are on the streets due to mental issues, hard times, etc., etc. There was only one that creeped me out last year. He was constantly looking at women passing by (through his blacked out sunglasses) and he was the only one that I can say I was even close to being rude to i.e., he'd speak to me but I wouldn't speak to him. Finally, I saw him harassing a girl and I called the police. Turns out he was registered sex offender. I was actually glad because it told me that that gut feeling is worth something. I belong to an organization that is just a couple blocks off downtown and we feed the homeless on certain Sundays. I make a point to find out names and then when I see them downtown I call them by name. All they really want is to be treated like a human. I have also found out you have to be really careful and keep your distance while doing this.

bucky - my son did something similar one time. He went up to this man that smelled like he had been in his clothes for a year and hugged him around his knees. They almost couldn't break eye contact and all they did was just smile at each other.
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Old 05-30-2008, 10:13 AM   #13
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I never offer these people any money because I feel like this; That since they are out there all day begging for money, then why in the world can't they be looking for a job?!

Most of them just don't want to go get help. They just would rather stay out in the streets and be bums where garbage food is for free and so are empty soda bottles and cans!

As for inviting them into my home, well, who knows if that when they leave, will something walk out the door with them when they do? Or if they'll be back looking for a place to stay the night? Or if a short visit turns into a long unwanted one?!
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Old 05-30-2008, 10:24 AM   #14
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Things must be different in the US than they are in Canada Corey. Here the homeless are most often mentally unstable to the point of not being able to hold a job, or hopelessly addicted to something.

Compassion is not so very hard is it? They may not be able to hold a job, but certainly we can offer them some food and a smile.
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Old 05-30-2008, 10:37 AM   #15
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Corey have you ever tried to get a job when you are homeless? Think about it. If you are homeless then you have no place to wash up or shower. You have no place to clean your cloths. How many employers do you think would want to hire someone in dirty worn out rags who has not showered in who knows how long?

How do you know that most of them do not want to get help? That is a very broad statement. Have you talked to them to know this?

Why would you just assume that these people would steal from you because they are homeless. Have you ever heard about judging a book by its cover?

I would not invite them into my home in most cases, but just because they are strangers, not because they are homeless.
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Old 05-30-2008, 10:52 AM   #16
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I give money ( small amounts) to the very old homeless. I've given food to the guys that stand on the street corner, won't give them money though.

When I worked a Sears a million years ago...there was a couple, the man on one corner and the lady on the other. Every day they'd stand there and beg for money. 5 o'clock came and ever night they'd get in their very fancy sports car and drive off. If they needed money so badly they could have sold that.
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Old 05-30-2008, 11:18 AM   #17
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I'd like to see this thread get back on the track amy intended it to be on. I, myself, had delete what I wrote in response to a post

amy - I think you brought up a very good point and I think your intention was more how we, as individuals, handle these types of situations and what we feel our obligation is, or not is.

I don't think amy's intention here was for us to judge anyone.
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Old 05-30-2008, 11:24 AM   #18
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or not is?



amy asked what would we have done in a similar situation. give something to them; offer work; just ignore them, oe even secretly despise their existence in your plane of reality.

i'm not sure what responses were off the track?
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Old 05-30-2008, 11:29 AM   #19
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You probably have a point bucky - I think there has been some stuff going on behind the scenes too that has my cackles up. I guess to read a blanket statement about such a large, diverse group of people rubbed me the wrong way.
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Old 05-30-2008, 11:35 AM   #20
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Even though I live in a small town, there is an exit from a very busy interstate here, and we used to have a lot of vagrants who sat out by the shopping center with signs wanting to work for food, but that is no longer allowed. The police run off the panhandlers, and take the people in genuine need to the food pantry, which also furnishes things like diapers, infant formula, and even motel rooms for people who've had car trouble on the road and need help.

I wouldn't recommend bringing any of these people home with you to work, eat or whatever. You could be robbed or worse...you just never know.
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