When a stranger asks you for $1 or a cigarette,do you give it ???

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  1. Eaglekiwi profile image75
    Eaglekiwiposted 13 years ago

    See here's the thing.
    Begging for money even a dollar is not as common from where I come from ( yes occasionally) but its laughed at or openly scorned at so for whatever reason its just not common.
    I have lived in the USA for 5 months now ,and been approached so many times mostly young guys asking for money or a cigarette!
    Twice an older perhaps homeless guy asked for money because he was hungry. I knew the sensible thing would have been to give him food ,and going against my better judgement I gave him $2,only to have him ask me again 30 mins later. I said to him I gave you $2 before ,did you buy food ,this time he was mean and scowled ..well im still hungry dammit!! lol dohh me....

    I dont understand how they can be so bold. I have been without before ,but to beg just has never been in my psyche.
    I know times are bad ,but geeze my parents made us dig and plant a vegetable garden so we never went hungry, or cook food from scratch. I had five brothers and they learned to fish and hunt early too.
    I asked one of my brothers what would do if my nephew was hangin out and asked a stranger for a $1..kick his ass and put him to work was his harsh reply.
    Still I cant help wondering when the cost of living is not as expensive in the USA...food ,petrol,cigarettes,alcohol than back home why do they have no shame and still beg for money?

    1. HappyHer profile image54
      HappyHerposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Because they can.  I live in Cleveland, OH and have one of the highest rates of homeless.  I will not give money, it isn't helpful and is usually spent on booze or drugs.  I'll give a dollar, I'll even give food if I feel so moved, but never cash.  I donate food and clothes to many different programs and feel they can find those programs if they really wanted to as the information is easily available.

  2. Everyday Miracles profile image86
    Everyday Miraclesposted 13 years ago

    The simple answer is "yes."

    In every culture there are those who don't work because they don't *want* to work, and for the most part these are the people you're encountering (regardless of the economy). I'm sorry if I sound harsh and uncaring, but I, too, have been without. I have been homeless, living in a car or in shelters. I have never begged for a dime in my life!

    My husband is fond of telling the story of how he once saw the same man every day on the same street corner, holding a sign that said "will work for food." He said to the "gentleman," "meet me here tomorrow and I will give you work." The man was never seen at the same location again.

  3. Kudlit profile image64
    Kudlitposted 13 years ago

    Begging is easier than working, I suppose. I remember a Sherlock Holmes story where a man was writing about begging. He tried it and he found out that it's lucrative. So he became a professional beggar.

    I admire how you value working for one's share. If every able body earned his or her living, poverty would be eliminated in no time.

    1. Eaglekiwi profile image75
      Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      thankyou , but to be honest we didnt have a choice whether we wanted to dig a garden or help out on poultry farms for a few hours on a Saturday ,it was just the thing to do and if we didnt need the food someone else did.
      Even if my brothers caught more fish than we could eat ,it was shared around ,same thing with hunting ,the meat was shared.
      Maybe whats changed is now we tend to not share as much,or their are more takers than givers Im not sure ,but its definately not right asking for money. Some have this attitude that you are in the wrong if you refuse them ,totally crazy!

  4. profile image0
    girly_girl09posted 13 years ago

    I believe that people should be 'taught to fish', instead of 'handing out fish'. Yes, there are people in great need and those people should be helped. However, most people do not typically need to continually receive handouts year after year. We should emphasize skill training so those less fortunate can work and experience the joy of their own paycheck.

    Everyone should be helped to get back on their feet. Definitely.

    That being said, I never hand out money or cigarettes to anyone, because usually the people that ask appear that they do so 'professionally'.

    This sort of fits in here...you won't believe it!
    The other day, I was at wal-mart and this 'sweet' little girl came up to me and asked if I would give her four quarters for her dollar so she could play games. I didn't have any change on me so I told her that she could go to customer service. I took a closer look at her 'dollar bill', it was an OBVIOUS fake. I was really shocked that a kid would do this. She knew what she was doing!

    1. Eaglekiwi profile image75
      Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      wow I fee pre-warned ,shame on the parents huh.

      1. profile image0
        girly_girl09posted 13 years agoin reply to this

        I was totally shocked. I didn't see her parents around, I'm assuming they were in the store shopping. I scolded her and tried to scare her straight by telling her that she could go to jail because what she was trying to do was a crime. No clue if it made a difference, but I wasn't very happy! It's scary.

  5. profile image50
    MSmithHubposted 13 years ago

    I will give only if old folk, young kids or handicapped. If the guy looks able to work, then I won't give anything.

  6. galleryofgrace profile image72
    galleryofgraceposted 13 years ago

    I give when I can, but I have avoided a lot of it because , one day I gave a guy my last few dollars cash. And shortly thereafter ,I saw him jump into a pickup that was a newer model than my vehicle and drive away.
    But on another occassion, a guy begged for $2, saying he needed a drink. He was shaking so I gave it to him for his honesty.I'm always afraid of bad karma.

  7. Pete Maida profile image60
    Pete Maidaposted 13 years ago

    I may give the dollar but not a cigarette.  First I wouldn't have one and second I'm not into assisted suicide.

    1. galleryofgrace profile image72
      galleryofgraceposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Well aren't you the golden one?

    2. Eaglekiwi profile image75
      Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      but what if he spent the $1 on cigarettes?
      I understand though ,guess we all have our reasons.

  8. febriedethan profile image78
    febriedethanposted 13 years ago

    I will give for $1, but not for cigarette cause I'm not smoking and I don't have any.

  9. Patty Inglish, MS profile image87
    Patty Inglish, MSposted 13 years ago

    I donate money/time through organizations and on my own to help people, so because we have so many professional beggers, I don't speak to those begging money or cigarettes. I know the warning that it could be turning away Jesus (probably not the cigrettes, lol), but I trust prayerful discernment. Occasionally, I find an honest peson that really does need help - so I give food, not money.

    After 20 years we still have the same few people scamming the city by asking everyone in one parking lot after another for $10 to help get them to a town 40 miles away. Ans a mom with her two kids after school stand at the entrances to shopping centers to beg from drivers and her new SUV is parked a few spaces away. The police crack down on all this from time to time, but the beggars begin again.

    I agree people should work; we have several day labor places where you can work and be paid the same day - yes, they charge you to cash the check, but it's work.

  10. tksensei profile image61
    tksenseiposted 13 years ago

    The moral hazard of giving money to a beggar aside, giving them cigarettes is just flat out cruel.

  11. comeflywithme18 profile image59
    comeflywithme18posted 13 years ago

    I personally wouldn't give money to a homeless person. On a night out I was walking with friends eating chips and I saw a homeless man and asked him if he wanted my chips. He said "no I would rather have money instead" this has turned me off trying to help them completely.
    I'm a smoker too and about a month ago I was walking to the bus station and a homeless man was walking and he came up really close to my face and asked me for a ciggarette. I had ciggarettes with me at the time and I felt indimitated by this man, as he was at least 30 and I'm only 18. I said no, but I felt really scared. I personally spend part of my pay on ciggarettes so why should I give it to someone for free, but then again if my friend asked me for a ciggarette I wouldn't think twice about giving them one. Maybe im just a hypocrite!

  12. Dame Scribe profile image58
    Dame Scribeposted 13 years ago

    Yes to both and am guilty of havin a high degree of kindness and generosity, hmm ---> tiptoes out tongue

    1. Eaglekiwi profile image75
      Eaglekiwiposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      lol ,Ive done both and I dont even agree with it ,go figure
      maybe thats what they play on , our emotions!

    2. Lisa HW profile image62
      Lisa HWposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      You're not "guilty" of anything.  You're someone who is secure and not that worried about your dollar or cigarette that you'll let it stop you from maybe helping someone (even if there's the chance they're taking advantage).

  13. Gordon Hamilton profile image95
    Gordon Hamiltonposted 13 years ago

    I used to have a morality problem with this scenario. My religion teaches me that I should always give to those less fortunate than myself and that Jesus himself is in those beggars on the street.

    What I later came to realise though is - as so many of you have pointed out - that these days, beggars are not beggars by necessity, they are beggars by choice.

    It is crazy in the part of Scotland (my old home town!) where I am back living at the moment. Begging from such as drug addicts for cigarettes in particular is a joke. You can't light a cigarette on the street without being approached by them in their legions. It is - incredibly - worse here in this small town than it was when I lived in London!

    My new attitude (and the latest example was only yesterday) is to tell them to "fornicate" off and get a job, so that they can buy their own damned fags (a fag in the UK is a cigarette! smile)

  14. Eaglekiwi profile image75
    Eaglekiwiposted 13 years ago

    Yea its tough ,sad day when youre afraid to reach into your purse or pocket because someone is watching to pounce.

  15. Ivorwen profile image67
    Ivorwenposted 13 years ago

    I use to give money, but have quit after running into the same person drunk, later. If some one claims to be hungry, I have canned food and little hand-held can openers (since most transiet beggers s=claim not to have a can opener).  Most turn it down.  They really aren't hungry!  Lately, I have occationally helped someone to fill their gas tank, but the money goes to the cashier, not the person -- even that has not always prooved wise.

  16. MSdiva4life profile image60
    MSdiva4lifeposted 13 years ago

    There are many ways in which each of us finds a way to support our way of life. Althougth I don't agree with the thought of "sympathy funds", most beggars feel that it is their right to ask never considering your right refuse.

    How does the saying go, Teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime - okay something along those lines. I don't give for the day, I give to a lifetime.

  17. marisuewrites profile image59
    marisuewritesposted 13 years ago

    I would say mostly no, but go by your gut at the time.  I don't want to continue to enable them, I might instead ask them if they are hungry, and come back with a hamburger (or a salad) or a piece of fruit and I have done that many times.  I don't do it now, but at one time I carried a phone number of a soup kitchen, and they would tell the person how to get there by public transport...but there is no easy answer to the question.  If the person looks hungry, I figure a dollar won't kill me, but another cigarette or bottle of wine might them.  So, it just depends on what I think at the moment....such a difficult situation, no ONE RIGHT answer I don't think.

  18. Zeta Sfico profile image60
    Zeta Sficoposted 13 years ago

    well, yes for a dollar but not for cigar, i'm not smoking. but it'll be first and last time. no more after that. they should be 'taught to fish' like girly_girl09 said.

  19. earnestshub profile image86
    earnestshubposted 13 years ago

    In my city a dollar or two if I have it spare is never a problem, but in some places you cannot do this as you would have nothing left for yourself after sharing with so many who are needy.

  20. profile image0
    Leta Sposted 13 years ago

    I have to think about this, because I'll be in San Francisco over the Memorial Day holiday....  Lotsa homeless beggars--one of the few reasons not to like the city.

    But--I sort of get a feel for what the person is about.  I don't give to young people obviously scamming to fund their trip up the coast or who just want to experience the lifestyle...  But, as an example, when I was up early in the morning out getting coffee, I encountered a woman just waking up whose bed was in a doorway in front of a building.  She looked so...bad...I gave her $5.  I once gave a homeless woman walking in the desert for miles $20.

    So yes, I give a spare $ or to if I intuit they'd use it as intended.

    Cigarettes?  No comment.

  21. marisuewrites profile image59
    marisuewritesposted 13 years ago

    I basically think it's humanly kind to respond to the moment.  They don't need a sermon, maybe they're addicted or not, they still have to eat to live and it all takes money.  If I give, I just do it, and it's up to them how they use it.  Mainly, I focus on groups of charity that actually help people; some people are not going to change.  It's very hard for me to walk away from either.  In Mexico, I made the mistake of giving money to a small child begging, and was immediately mobbed by dozens...it was quite frightful, and I cried both from tears of fear and tears of sadness for such a way of life.

    I've always worried about those hungry and without a home, assuming all have stories of unbearable loss...

    1. earnestshub profile image86
      earnestshubposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I agree mariesuewrites, I just hope that the money helps them get whatever they decide they need without the sermon. I have experienced being outnumbered by starving children in other countries and felt helpless and overwhelmed by sadness.

  22. acouasm profile image74
    acouasmposted 13 years ago

    I wont give to a middle aged drunk man who obviously is a leech of society. I have before and they just keep pushing you to give them more, it's insulting after you have put forth the kind gesture of a few dollars. I will give to teenagers that seriously look like they are traveling or squatting. I used to be one of those kids and the only way to make your dream of traveling around possible is to ask strangers for help. You'd be surprised with how many kind people are out there.
    I will also give if the person looks disabled, some people are like that because they can't work, they have no family, and their lives all around suck.

  23. hnyaji profile image60
    hnyajiposted 13 years ago

    would you give him, if he asks you for anything else?
    tell him fuk off!


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