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RS6405
11-11-2013, 11:43 AM
Here is a what if situation:

It's Veteran's Day..... (Thank you all for serving, BTW)

You decided to go to your a local restaurant that is offer ending free lunch for those who have served. There is a homeless man in front of you while waiting to be seated. He asking for a free lunch while claiming to have been a vet. The hostess asks the man for some kind of proof, but he doesn't have anything.

What would you do?

Stalwart
11-11-2013, 11:49 AM
My answer doesn't rely on it being Veteran's Day or not; simply buy the man a meal.

TSgt"M"
11-11-2013, 12:12 PM
My answer doesn't rely on it being Veteran's Day or not; simply buy the man a meal.

Yep, echo that.

RS6405
11-11-2013, 12:43 PM
Would anything be different, if after talking to him, you believe he had served?

Absinthe Anecdote
11-11-2013, 12:48 PM
I've become a little jaded when it comes to homeless. Where I live there are so many and though a good number of them are living on the street, most are simply junkies with a place to live and have little interest in food.

That said, anytime I see a person ask for food, I get them some food, but NEVER money.

I used to hand out wool socks and gloves and those little cans of tuna to those who are truly living on the street, it is easy to tell the difference, just look at how torn down their clothes are, but make no mistake all have a drug and alcohol problem.

There is a very small minority that are on the streets because of severe mental problems and don't do drugs.

Most of the people you see asking for money at street lights have a place to live and are just trying to gather up enough money for a fix.

I used to buy a bacon/egg sandwich and a cup of coffee for an old squeegee bum every once and a while and pass it to him when I passed his corner, I'm sure he is long dead now.

If you live in an area with lots of pan handlers, you really shouldn't give them money. The best thing you can do is get some business cards of a church/shelter that offers a drug recovery program and hand that to them when they approach your car.

Stalwart
11-11-2013, 12:50 PM
If he was homeless, I doubt I would pay much mind if he was a veteran or not ... unless he was being an ass to people etc. At that point my empathy may run short.

Last Veteran's day I was having a late breakfast at a diner close to here. I heard a guy (younger than me) talking up the waitress about his time in the Marine Corps, fighting in Afghanistan etc. I walked up with the intent of buying his meal (he wasn't homeless, but I was going to do it just to be nice to a fellow Marine.) When I said "Semper Fi", short for the Marine motto Semper Fidelis (always faithful), he said "what?", so I said the full version "Semper Fidelis" and he asked me what that was. I just said to have a nice day. I either met the first Marine I ever knew who didn't know what that was, or a guy who had never been in the Marine Corps.

Chief_KO
11-11-2013, 01:06 PM
If he was homeless, I doubt I would pay much mind if he was a veteran or not ... unless he was being an ass to people etc. At that point my empathy may run short.

Last Veteran's day I was having a late breakfast at a diner close to here. I heard a guy (younger than me) talking up the waitress about his time in the Marine Corps, fighting in Afghanistan etc. I walked up with the intent of buying his meal (he wasn't homeless, but I was going to do it just to be nice to a fellow Marine.) When I said "Semper Fi", short for the Marine motto Semper Fidelis (always faithful), he said "what?", so I said the full version "Semper Fidelis" and he asked me what that was. I just said to have a nice day. I either met the first Marine I ever knew who didn't know what that was, or a guy who had never been in the Marine Corps.

Wow, worst imposter ever. I was at KFC a few months ago and witnessed an older couple buy a meal for a shopping cart guy (can't say if he's homeless or not but he did have a shopping cart full of cans parked outside). He looked downtrodden and was sipping a cup of coffee. They brought the tray of food over (a complete KFC meal) and presented it to him as they were leaving. About 15 minutes later he got up and left without touching a single thing on the tray...

CYBERFX1024
11-11-2013, 05:16 PM
I live here in Pasadena CA right off the main street (Colorado) where they have the Rose Bowl Parade every year. There are a lot of homeless and down trodden people that roam up and down the street EVERY single day, and they are always asking for money. There is this older black guy who walks around with a cane who really does need it, but every time I see him he always ask for money. The first 4 times he gave this spill about just getting out of prison until I told him that was getting alittle old and he needs to stop. I refuse to give them money because there are a number of half way houses right off this road, and it seems the homeless have some really nice clothes.

Absinthe Anecdote
11-11-2013, 06:46 PM
I live here in Pasadena CA right off the main street (Colorado) where they have the Rose Bowl Parade every year. There are a lot of homeless and down trodden people that roam up and down the street EVERY single day, and they are always asking for money. There is this older black guy who walks around with a cane who really does need it, but every time I see him he always ask for money. The first 4 times he gave this spill about just getting out of prison until I told him that was getting alittle old and he needs to stop. I refuse to give them money because there are a number of half way houses right off this road, and it seems the homeless have some really nice clothes.

I think giving money to panhandlers (junkies) is the worst thing you can do. You are just enabling their drug habit.

The exit ramp off the Capitol beltway onto Connecticut Ave leads in to Chevy Chase, an affluent neighborhood. I took that route to work every morning for three years and it has to be prime real estate for panhandlers.

Every time I was stopped at that light I saw panhandlers get at least one dollar sometimes more.

The red light cycles through every three minutes and that comes out to nearly twenty dollars per hour.

If I can find the story about the guy in NYC who faked being an amputee, I'll post a link.

garhkal
11-11-2013, 06:50 PM
In the past i have gone into walmart or some other store and came out with 2-3 bags each with a bottle of water, a sandwich pack and a candy bar for those homeless. Most have taken it with a gleeful thanks on their face.. One guy though told me to PO, just give him damn cash or nothing!.. So i told him "Nothing it is"..

BENDER56
11-11-2013, 08:19 PM
Not sure if I'm heartless or merely cynical, but I've never given anything to panhandlers -- not a penny, not even a morsel of food. I assume they're all scammers. I'm thinking if someone's truly destitute they know where to go to get aid.

Juggs
11-11-2013, 08:42 PM
Not sure if I'm heartless or merely cynical, but I've never given anything to panhandlers -- not a penny, not even a morsel of food. I assume they're all scammers. I'm thinking if someone's truly destitute they know where to go to get aid.

That's a sad mentality. I usually give what I can. There was this one guy at HI, he at least sold papers at an intersection. So every Sunday, we would get him a plain bagel, cream cheese and OJ.

Other times, ie given at intersections.

AJBIGJ
11-12-2013, 03:31 AM
It's not all cynicism:

You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OQjlzh279E

AJBIGJ
11-12-2013, 03:32 AM
It's not all cynicism:
Freeloaders do exist in this world:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OQjlzh279E

Drackore
11-16-2013, 05:17 PM
You want to help the homeless? Donate to the shelters and soup kitchens? Don't give directly to the bums. There's a reason the zoos say "Don't feed the animals". Same applies on the streets.

Even giving them clothes and food enables their drug and booze habits. They take it and trade it. Give it to the shelters. They'll get it to those that really need it and will really use it (or at much better odds than you will).

When I took my kid back home once to see a football game in between overseas assignments we passed a bum on the street. I was feeling generous and wanted to use it as an educational moment so I gave the bum a fiver. My kid said "Dad you have more than that", which I anticipated. I looked at the bum and said "What ya gonna use that money I gave ya for?" The bum said "Food". I said "I'll give you another five if you tell me the truth", the bum said "The liquor store" while almost lunging at the other five dollar bill.

My kid, a teen, didn't stop asking me questions the rest of the night (a rarity). Sometimes life lessons require hard knock examples to get kids to really open their eyes.

Give to reputable organizations if you have some need to sleep better at night.

Rusty Jones
11-16-2013, 05:57 PM
When I took my kid back home once to see a football game in between overseas assignments we passed a bum on the street. I was feeling generous and wanted to use it as an educational moment so I gave the bum a fiver. My kid said "Dad you have more than that", which I anticipated. I looked at the bum and said "What ya gonna use that money I gave ya for?" The bum said "Food". I said "I'll give you another five if you tell me the truth", the bum said "The liquor store" while almost lunging at the other five dollar bill.

Do you really think this proves anything? Regardless of what the truth was, he likely suspected that you assumed he'd buy booze with it, and then proceeded to give you the answer that he thought would get him another five bucks. If I had no intention of buying booze, I'd give you that same answer too.

Greg
11-16-2013, 06:23 PM
While I encourage others to donate to shelters, instead of the street person, I think it's a good idea to research the particular organization you might be interested in donating to. Some are a little overly generous to their administrative side of the house.

The environment inside a homeless shelter is another subject entirely. There are reasons why some inhabitants tie the laces of their boots/shoes around their necks before bunking down. Others don't even bother, they feel safer on the streets. Other shelters are over zealous in enforcement of rules, and regulations, causing high turn over, and added stress on those already close to a breaking point.

If one is truly sincere in doing good, volunteer your time. Take the temperature of the place, or person's situation, yourself. Other than that, you're blowing smoke.

kool-aid
11-17-2013, 12:26 AM
The homeless organization I have worked with provides the folks with meals, and necessities to live on the streets like clothes, socks, underwear, blankets, tents, and boots. They also help them apply for government programs. But they don't give them money. They may give money to an organization the homeless person is working with, but they don't hand them money to spend on drugs, booze and crap.

garhkal
11-17-2013, 05:09 AM
That's why i prefer to give to a soup kitchen rather than a homeless person himself.

wildman
11-17-2013, 06:04 PM
We should also try to alleviate the root cause of why some of these individuals find themselves in dire conditions. Give to organizations that will indeed help with more than just a band-aid quick fix, and never give money directly to the individual.

Always,
Wildman