Friday, April 17, 2009

The Great Panhandler Debate

When it comes to panhandlers, everybody has an opinion. Some people always give money and some people never give them a dime.

Gone are the days of the offensive squeegee punks, today's panhandlers are polite and respectful, even if you don't give them anything. It's as if they went to the special panhandling school of charm.
They are mindful how they dress, not in rags, but in clothing that gives the appearance of need. They all display that same cardboard sign, with a handwritten message of that screams of desperation.

I'm generally not impressed. There's a urban myth out there that says they make hundreds of dollars a day....Dunno.

Me, I fall on the side of the 'GETTA JOB!' crowd, those who give nothing. I'm also no fan of the indigent young punks and old rubbies that make up the majority of those who extort money at strategic intersections.

However, this un-typical panhandler, pictured above, got my attention.
She didn't fit the usual profile and her message on the sign was compelling.

"I have 2 Kids
No Work
No Money for Food and Diapers
Help Me! God Bless!

My usually cold heart thawed momentary and I gave her a Toonie.
She was dutifully respectful, bowed and offered me a 'Gawd bless you'.

You know, it made me feel pretty good. Sort of superior, in a perverse way.

A kilometer later, I turned into the Blue Bonnets shopping centre was struck by the many 'HELP WANTED" signs that propagated the site.

...and I thought back to the panhandler's sign:

"I Don't Have Work"

Grrr.....I want my two bucks back!!!!!

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1 comment:

  1. I know what you mean! So annoying. Check out my similar story: