Tuesday, September 20, 2011

We All Got Troubles

Yesterday I went to the Registry of Motor Vehicles to get my driver's license renewed. Anyone who has ever had to do this knows that one encounters all kinds while waiting for one's number to be called. On this day there was a young man begging for $25 so that he could pay to get a state-issued ID. Apparently he lives in a homeless shelter and was about to sign the lease on a Section 8 apartment. For those of you who don't know what a Section 8 apartment is, it's public housing for low-income people. He claimed that in order to sign his lease he needed a birth certificate and an ID, otherwise he'd be back out on the street. He also added that the shelter wasn't willing to pay for his ID. Personally I really don't know how much truth there was to his story. There are a couple of things about this that nag at me. First of all, he must've known well in advance of his getting approved for the apartment that he'd need an ID. Also, you pretty much need an ID for everything these days, so why didn't he have one? As for the shelter not being willing to pay for it, I would think that they'd be happy to shell out $25 in order to get this guy out of their hair and off the streets.

Valid or not, his story made me think. Were this 10 or 15 years ago, I'm sure someone would've given him the money he needed. Hell, that someone may have even been me! In the past it seems as if we all felt a little more generous and were more willing to help our fellow man. Now the economy is so bad that many of us are only a paycheck or two away from being right where that guy is. We don't really have cash to spare anymore. The glut of con artists that has surfaced also makes us wary of just handing someone money. It's kind of sad, but it's what our existence has become. In general, I'm a sweet, giving, compassionate person; which would make it easy to be taken for a ride if I didn't harden my heart just that little bit. If the guy really was telling the truth and wasn't able to raise $25, I feel bad for him, but because he's a stranger, I couldn't risk giving him my hard-earned money.

4 comments:

  1. Iz know what you mean, you wants to halp but you duznt want to be a patsy. Iz think halping iz buying a sammich or giving money fur a sammich but $25 seemz like a lawt an youz rite it wuzn't a sprize him needing it. Oh dear. Its sad izn't it? But you did teh rite things fur you to do at teh time wat it happened in. oh dear Iz running on now, meow. Purrrs fur Topaz.

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  2. I agree with you 100% Michelle. Of late it seems everyone is holding their hand out, and I'm sure some of it is a scam. It's very hard to know what is legit and what isn't. I gotten to the point, where I've cut way back. I don't mind helping out someone truly in need, but I'm seeing so much of it these days and am having trouble sorting out the legitimate ones from the con artists.

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  3. I know it's sad isn't it? I've quit giving money to big charities for the reasons you gave above. With money so tight when I give, I give to people I know and I deal with specific needs. Toki's sendin' Topza a high-five!

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  4. And it's not always feasible to borrow from friends and relatives. Besides, you may not want to. Under such circumstances, it's a guaranteed payday loans that comes to your rescue.

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