Re: *anti-panhandling laws: arguments against & issue overview FWD

Manfred Theis (
Mon, 09 Nov 1998 14:39:49 PST

"What causes poor people to imagine that panhandling is a solution in 
the first place?"

Imagine that it is December and you are cold, wet, and hungry.  Have you 
ever been cold, wet, and truly hungry with no legal place to warm 
up(rhetorical)?  In many instances, it is a matter of a couple of hours 
in a warm diner with something warm to drink or eat that avoids 
hypothermia.  It is incredibly difficult to address issues from an 
empowered and far-seeing viewpoint when you are thinking about how to 
survive to the next day.  In many cases, sadly, one can have the two 
dollars or so necessary to warm up and re-energize at a small diner and 
be turned away anyway because of their 'class.'  It happens often.  What 
does a homeless person do then?  Press charges?  Most move on to some 
other diner but, to tell you the truth, without the experience of 
comraderie that one gets from feeling a part of the people or community, 
one is likely to feel particularly colder.  Believe it or not, 
connectedness to one's human family, when provided, can make one feel a 
little bit warmer, literally.  

Ever been involved in a survival situation AND been thinking about 
career planning at the same time?

"Dear sir, excuse my enthusiasm or rather madness, for I am
 really drunk with intellectual vision whenever I take a 
 pencil or engraver into my hand....."

-William Blake in a letter to William Hayley

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