Many Homeless Unwilling To Help Themselves
It's easy to throw money at "homeless" people and hope the problem goes away. It's harder to look at the reality of the situation. Many "homeless" have mental issues that prevent them from being a functioning part of society. Now, outside of that group are vagrants that are unwilling to make the sacrifices necessary to rejoin society. More after the jump.
First, let's stop and re-examine the previous dialogue. We need to separate the true homeless from the vagrants and transients. Talk to most of the people who live on the street and you'll find that they were unwilling to submit to someones rules in order to fit back in. Well, I'm sorry. There was a time when I had to move back in with my dad and I would have MUCH rather have slept in a park for a couple months. Then again, when you're looking for a gig you need some support, even if it's support you don't like. You need and address and a phone where potential employers can find you. You need to be able to pick up a real meal or two so you can keep getting out and looking for work.
Yeah, real life can suck. It sucks waiting on job callbacks or even those months that you have to walk to work until you can save enough money to get a piece of crap bike or a car, but before you know it, you get a few extra cents an hour and you get a better car and maybe you'll find someone to share expenses with and so on.
I've actually had homeless people tell me that won't stay at the Salvation Army, even on a freezing night, because they won't let them smoke. I've heard others say they won't live with family members because their 'mom is a b!tch'.
In Austin they have a problem with "Street Rats". "Street Rats" are basically kids with no discernible problem other than they're mad at their parents and decided it would be easier to huddle up and both beg for change and ridicule those going to school at U.T. They make the college and the live entertainment areas their homes and they quickly turn from "poor homeless" kids to people who will jump you and steal your wallet if they saw any money in there when you gave them a dollar.
So now our city is conducting a survey of homeless people to see what services they would like Lubbock to offer. Uh, no. The key to reintegrating homeless people into society is making them as uncomfortable as possible. My answer is simple; no you don't get to beg at intersections, no you don't get to roll a shopping cart full of stolen copper down the street and no you don't get to hang out at the library.
So far with the survey is saying that homeless people want a place they can go during the day when it's cold (other than the library). I'm sorry, if you don't pay for city services, you don't get to choose what they are. I think there are plenty of warm places you can go and fill out job applications.
Life sucks and the rest of us do things we don't want to do everyday. Most make sacrifices that they would rather not make. If a person is not suffering from mental illness, then they choose to suffer and they get no sympathy from me. Sometimes the best help you can give people is none.