Thank you Wendy Justice-Edwards for your words regarding B. Millers’ complaints about “beggars soliciting funds.” Yes, we should be very thankful we’re not in their shoes.
Based on my own feelings, we do feel uncomfortable walking past these beggars, trying to pretend they don’t exist. Does our conscience bother us? But, I find when I look at these people, smile and acknowledge them, I feel much better even if I don’t toss some coins into their hat.
A friendly smile and kind word does wonders for both giver and receiver.
But isn’t it odd how I feel sort of strange when I do the latter cause others walking by give me a questioning look.
The majority of these people have a mental illness for whatever reason – genetics, child abuse, accident, etc.
The lucky live off social services and help from friends and relations. Welfare cheques do not cover rent, food, clothing, toiletries, etc.
Others are homeless with no income to speak of and feel very humiliated that they’ve had to resort to begging.
Mental illness is not always a visible illness and frequently, friends and relatives have deserted them. I have spoken with some of these people and their lives would shock you.