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What is your reaction to the panhandlers that beg on the streets of your city?
How do you as an individual and a citizen respond to beggars? What role-model do you provide for your children?
I mostly am polite, and just say no. You have to remember that they are people too and if you don't agree with what they are doing they still deserve the basic human respect that you should give to anyone. I hope that people understand that there are many circumstances that can lead a person down that path and it is not just laziness. I have met homeless people that are disabled and can't earn a living. With state cut backs, their already small checks are dwindling. Some of them have no other choice, at least temporarily.
There have been times when by the grace of my family, I was able to avoid homelessness and that was because of illness, not laziness.
Some of them I help, like the guy who offers to wash my windows for a donation! He is doing something to earn it! Those who are obviously disabled. Those who are polite! Once I even helped a guy who told me he really needed a drink, his honesty really caught me off guard, I am used to so man other stories. Many you know are made up! But most of all I am polite and if I am not spiritually moved to help them, I tell them I am sorry but I can't help them right now! I know it is hard to find a job right now and for some it truly is the difference between having money for gas to look, or a meal for their family. Others I know it is for drugs and alcohol. The Lord helps me to determine who to help.
What is my reaction to the panhandlers that beg on the streets of my city? In fact, my reaction has changed through the years. I once thought to myself, “Get a job, man. Earn the money you need just like everyone else.”
But, later in life, I realized that, for the panhandler, begging for money IS his job. He works where and when he wants to raise just enough money to satisfy his needs. I came to realize that there was nothing inferior about panhandling. It was just another way to make a living. The giver actually receives the feeling of doing something good for his fellow man in return for his donation, which means that he is getting something in return for his money. As time passed, I began to see similarities between a panhandler asking for my spare change and a clergyman mailing contribution envelopes to church members.
Quilligrapher, Thanks for a new perspective on panhandling. You are so right to make that connection between the panhandler and the clergy. wow. Checked out my poem, titled: The Broadway Ave. Panhandler"
Well, as much as i can, and providing i have some change on me, i always try to give something plus a little Gospel tract to any beggar that asks of me. God´s Word tells us "give to whom asketh of thee". It does not say providing he is not going to get drinks or drugs with your money, or if they have an organized panhandling gang. Just says to give and period. The results are up to God.
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