My experience with panhandlers on median strips is consistent. Well, I am selective about them. That is probably a display of hypocrisy and fear on my part. Those I share with always offer me a “God bless” and a thank you.
My most recent encounter resulted in my inviting the lady to lunch. She was very charming and optimistic in spite of her depleted circumstances. I wrote about the encounter in this blog.
There has been some discussion about using the law to deal with people asking for handouts, to send them into hiding. I mostly see them on the median strips of busy streets. Some citizens want these people to be scolded with the authority of law.
“It is a hazardous situation in that drivers are worried about hitting somebody because people are stepping off the median to get money or food,” said neighbor Nicole Brule-Fisher.—KVOA
If you are homeless in Tucson you are considered offensive, apparently by the majority of citizens. Homeless people, they conclude, are clearly doing something wrong and are shunning responsibility. They are refusing the jobs that await them. They also, some say, might want to use your money to buy drugs. The lady I had lunch with wants to buy a chocolate cake to celebrate her son’s birthday.
I have a master’s degree from a respected university, some modest talents, and an email address. Currying favor with employers is not all that easy. I speak from experience.
Alan Kaye said he attended Thursday night’s meeting because he said he’s fed up with the homeless making a mess of his community, specifically the intersection of Ina and La Cholla.—Tucson News Now
She gave me some sob story about running out of gas on the way to her home in the east valley from visiting a sick relative in California. Said “I just need $5-$10 to get gas to make it home”. I only had a $20 and a $10 and gave her the $10.—City Data
Tucson citizens are a wild mix. We have the “snow birds” who come here to escape Minnesota winters. We have some employees and retirees of big companies like Raytheon. We have a huge number of people living in shacks cooled through our hot summers with window air conditioners. Which of these people are most inclined to offer mercy?
We don’t know.
As of 2015, there were about 565,000 homeless people living in the United States on any given night. It’s estimated that women comprise a little under 40% of that population. But that number may shift. Women and families are the fastest growing segment of the homeless population, with 85% of homeless families headed by single women.—Mashable
The number of homeless people, by coincidence, is more or less equal to the population of Tucson.
I am not a big Bible advocate, but I will refer readers to the passage in Luke 16:20 about the rich man who scorned Lazarus, a beggar. The rich man ends up in Hell and asks an angel to warn his five brothers of the price of greed and arrogance. The angel replies, “If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, through one rose from the dead.”