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Roadside Beggars?

Roadside Beggars?

Old Mar 8th 2005, 6:26 pm
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Default Roadside Beggars?

Do you give money to those people who stand at junctions holding up signs saying they are homeless and hungry? I see them every day, but rarely see anyone give them anything.

They always look in need of a good wash, but they rarely look hungry. In fact some are laughable - 200lb man holding a sign claiming that he is homeless and .... hungry! I'm given to understand that no one needs to be homeless in the US, that if they are begging and homeless that this situation is chosen by them, probably due to alcohol or drug addiction?

I remember one guy who was holding a sign saying "Just need booze!" - his honesty made me want to get him a beer! lol
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 6:31 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Originally Posted by Guelder Rose
Do you give money to those people who stand at junctions holding up signs saying they are homeless and hungry? I see them every day, but rarely see anyone give them anything.

They always look in need of a good wash, but they rarely look hungry. In fact some are laughable - 200lb man holding a sign claiming that he is homeless and .... hungry! I'm given to understand that no one needs to be homeless in the US, that if they are begging and homeless that this situation is chosen by them, probably due to alcohol or drug addiction?

I remember one guy who was holding a sign saying "Just need booze!" - his honesty made me want to get him a beer! lol
There's plenty of roadside beggers and people collecting donations (firemen, children's charities, etc.) around where I live. The local paper is also sold be men standing at traffic lights on busy roads!

The "charity" collectors can get a permit from the County to collect but I'm reluctant to give anything to anyone standing on the roadside.

There's a multitude of reasons for becoming homeless and you've named just two.




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Old Mar 8th 2005, 6:39 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

I dont. Not trying to be mean but just for some of the reasons you said. Some are out to supply their drug habit and since you cant tell for sure I decide I am not going to provide someones drugs. In most cities there are homeless shelters which will provide food and bedding so there is somewhere they can go. Since I dont want to feel guilty, I give to the local animal shelters. The animals really do just want food and shelter.
What bothers me most I guess is that some of these people seem very able bodied. So that if they really wanted work they could find it even if it starts out something really menial. There are labor trucks that will pick up anybody able bodied to do day labor. All they have to do is be waiting at a certain time of day at specific locations.
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 6:51 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

I never give money to the roadside beggars as most are addicted to drugs, alcohol or both. However, my daughter show me a way to give to them without giving money. How many times have you gone out to eat, only to end up with a doggie bag. As she said, she has lost count of the number of times she has brought home food intending to eat it for lunch the next day but doesn't. Now she gives any leftovers to the guys on the roadside and apparently they are always grateful.
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 6:56 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Originally Posted by Guelder Rose
Do you give money to those people who stand at junctions holding up signs saying they are homeless and hungry? I see them every day, but rarely see anyone give them anything.

They always look in need of a good wash, but they rarely look hungry. In fact some are laughable - 200lb man holding a sign claiming that he is homeless and .... hungry! I'm given to understand that no one needs to be homeless in the US, that if they are begging and homeless that this situation is chosen by them, probably due to alcohol or drug addiction?

I remember one guy who was holding a sign saying "Just need booze!" - his honesty made me want to get him a beer! lol
I have seen a man with a sign asking for money for just a few beers on the street cormer and it made me laugh as to how honest he was. But I didn't give him any money. I saw someone in the car in front give a homeless guy a $1 if he went over to the postal box and put there letters in it for them and I have never seen someone move so fast. I met a man asking for money outside Target one day and he didn't look all that dirty actually he looked quite smart and I didn't think he was homless at all. When I said know I din't have anymoney on me that was true all I had was my cards he started going off on me how I was making $500 a week and he wasn't along with the rest that he said. I wish I was earning that kind of money as I am a stay at home mum. So I got rather angry at him gave him a bit of my scotish attitude and told him to go into Target and get a job as they were hiring. I have seen him sice and he had a hair cut so he must be doing ok earning his living outside Target.
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 7:05 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Kinda hard to tell the real down and outs from the professional beggars. Apparently you can even get a degree in it i recall reading somewhere with anticipated earnings of about 40k per year. Not bad.
 
Old Mar 8th 2005, 7:12 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Originally Posted by callë
I dont. Not trying to be mean but just for some of the reasons you said. Some are out to supply their drug habit and since you cant tell for sure I decide I am not going to provide someones drugs. In most cities there are homeless shelters which will provide food and bedding so there is somewhere they can go. Since I dont want to feel guilty, I give to the local animal shelters. The animals really do just want food and shelter.
What bothers me most I guess is that some of these people seem very able bodied. So that if they really wanted work they could find it even if it starts out something really menial. There are labor trucks that will pick up anybody able bodied to do day labor. All they have to do is be waiting at a certain time of day at specific locations.
I don't think being mean comes into it! We all work very hard for what we have and should be able to choose how we spend that money ... and I find it hard to think of a really good reason to be begging for money on the roadside every day of the week (we have beggars here who have their own pitch!).

I remember one beggar ... she followed us into a diner and bought herself a beer. We ordered, and when our food was brought to our table this woman got up and begged us to give her some! We didn't give her any and we weren't being mean ... she had money and had spent it on beer ... her problem if she was hungry, not ours!

I do feel for those who really do need help. When I was in Las Vegas last month there was a woman outside Denny's ... she was filthy and you could smell her a mile away but my heart went out to her. She was very old and it became apparent that she had mental problems, she didn't want anything from us and was just waiting for her order of onion rings (the staff in Denny's asked her to wait for her order outside because the smell was so bad). Homeless people like her do need help, but those who beg by the roadside never look as though they are really in need.

Another one I hate ... going to the gas station and being confronted with, "I've run out of gas, can you spare $10?" Ask them to take you to their car so that you can put gas in it for them and they disappear really fast! lol
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 7:21 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Originally Posted by jjmb
I never give money to the roadside beggars as most are addicted to drugs, alcohol or both. However, my daughter show me a way to give to them without giving money. How many times have you gone out to eat, only to end up with a doggie bag. As she said, she has lost count of the number of times she has brought home food intending to eat it for lunch the next day but doesn't. Now she gives any leftovers to the guys on the roadside and apparently they are always grateful.

I've seen that being done and you're right, they are always grateful! This also ensures that your donation does not end up being spent on drugs or booze.

I did suggest the idea of us doing that to my husband once but he said no, probably because he has spent a lifetime here and is just sick of being asked for money by these people. However, he did say that the next time we had pizza he would be willing to give them the box with the left over crusts inside ... not the best of ideas, but he thought it was funny!
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 7:39 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Can get food vouchers for certain places, get some of those and give to shelters...I'm skint, but my good deed for the x-mas hols before I came here was get a couple vouchers at the local homeless shelter and handed them out....only a few squid, but it was enough for a hot soup and drink that a couple restraunts in town would put in a cup for them.
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 9:18 pm
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Post Re: Roadside Beggars?

It's just as bad in large towns and cities in the UK....usually young men with a mangy looking dog by their side - I usually feel more sorry for the dog!

I used to get very cheesed off when I lived in Upper Clapton in the London borough of Hackney (Stoke Newington station was at the bottom of our street, about a 15 minute walk away). I was often accosted by young Irish women (gypsies?) with babies asking for money for milk for them....of course it wasn't for the benefit of their offspring. I've heard that it's now Eastern Europeans who are now doing a lot of begging in London (and worse).

It's a pity that a similar enterprise such as the homeless selling copies of "The Big Issue" hasn't started up in the States. I almost always buy a copy when I'm in the UK, even though it's become even more left-wing of late (my husband's employer has a charitable wing called the 'Reuters Foundation' and they're benefactors of "The Big Issue').

Another place which has a large proportion of beggars is Vancouver in Canada - we were constantly accosted when we stayed there for a couple of days by people of all ages and ethnicities.
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 9:24 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Wonder what it's like in france...being legal occupation and all that...
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 9:25 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

I normally have a selection of fruit in the car (snacks for me and the kids). If I see one that genuinely looks like they need it, I will normally give them a piece of fruit - its generally obvious from their reaction whether they are genuinely hungry and grateful or not! I rarely do it if I have the kids in the car though - there are always those stories about getting held up by beggars floating around, and I won't risk the kids.

I never give them money for pretty much the same reasons mentioned above (alcohol/drugs).
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 9:44 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Originally Posted by Englishmum
I've heard that it's now Eastern Europeans who are now doing a lot of begging in London (and worse).
You might peruse this when you've got a spare 5 minutes some time in the day.
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 10:23 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

Originally Posted by fatbrit
You might peruse this when you've got a spare 5 minutes some time in the day.
I have and the point you are making is?? I thought it sounded familiar and then I notice the item is about to celebrate its' 5th anniversary.
What people have to be aware of also is when you are filling up with petrol and someone knocks your window waving a $5 note saying you have dropped it. This is a ruse being used for you to open your door/window with unfortunate consequences. The amount of charity work done locally for the homeless and out of work is really staggering. Nobody need go without.
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Old Mar 8th 2005, 10:29 pm
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Default Re: Roadside Beggars?

As the saying goes they are only going to waste it on drugs and booze - well what the hell were you going to do with it yourself!!!

Still don't give to them though!!
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