Friday, May 24, 2013

To Give or Not to Give

Homelessness has been a pretty hot topic for decades.  The land of the free, home of the brave, capitalism, democracy, place where you can be anything or anyone you want to be.  The previous sentence is filled with words or phrases describing our great nation, yet we can't get rid of this problem named Homelessness.  Men fight for our country in wars that they may not agree with and we can't find them a place to call home when they return!  Its a sad reality!  Now to what my article is really about.  I don't know who is really homeless and who is faking! 

If you live in some of the larger cities in America you may have the same conflict that I struggle with everyday.  Let me set the scene.  I work for the Department of Veteran Affairs and behind my office is the hospital were our veterans are seen.  In Chicago there is a high population of very low income or homeless veterans.  The above information is important because no matter what route I take in order to get to work or what route I take in order to leave work, I will be approached by a homeless person.  Am I wrong because unconsciencoulsly my mind begins to look at what he/she has on. What they are wearing will determine whether I will give them money or not.  If you have Jordans (no matter how busted) I will not be donating to your funds.  That may be wrong of me, but hey, its my money.  Let me give an example of what I saw just yesterday.  I'm waiting to get on the expressway and a gentleman is asking for money or help.  I do the usual and look him up and down.  This man is ready to go to the club...CLEAN!  First, I was upset because he look better dressed than me and I work.  Then he didn't have enough smarts to dress for work.  I feel like there is a dress code for those who are going to beg for money and looking like you can go clubbing is not it.  Now had he been dressed a little more like a homeless person I would probably have given some money.

The example I gave in the previous paragraph really exemplifies the struggle.  Every time I pull up to a homeless person without any effort at all I examine them and then I have to make a decision (To give or not to give) based on the information that subconsciously entered my mind.  I believe homelessness can be eradicate, but that's a long discussion so I will give you my quick fix.  I believe all homeless people should register with the city or state and be given a homeless card.  I believe this program can do many things for homeless people, our country and economy.  But for me, this program will provide me with confirmation that you are really homeless and need help.  I would no longer have to guess.  I can just roll down my window and say "let me see your card."  Based on the person's next action I will have all the information I need to make a sound decision of whether To give or not to give!    

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