Underprivileged or Under-proud
by L. J. Martin
The next time you’re tempted to give money to a panhandler (bum) then remember this exchange between a cop and an Oklahoma City hand-out, palm-up scumbag, as just reported on Fox News:
Cop: “Why don’t you get a job?”
Bum: “Number one, I’m lazy; Number two I make $60,000 a year.”
That would be the end of story if it convinced you not to perpetuate this behavior on American streets. I was semi-cured when I was approached by a Native American in a shopping center in Missoula, Montana, who was with his wife (babe in arms) and his elderly mother. He asked, “Man, can you help me out? I need gas to get back home to the rez.” I, feeling guilty that my work ethic had paid off, gave him five bucks. A week later, same guy, same sidewalk in front of the shopping center. I walked in the pack-and-ship I frequent and asked the clerk. “What’s the story with the guy bumming money out front.” The answer, “Oh, he’s here every summer working the sidewalk. The grandma and baby thing works really well.”
I should have been cured.
Two years later I was leaving a Subway shop where I’d just bought a sandwich, and had it cut in half as my wife might have enjoyed it and I was on my way home. Driving out of the parking lot, wa la, a panhandler with his dog and sign “Hungry. Will work for food.” Again, feeling guilty about my success and forgetting to attribute it to work ethic, I stopped and pushed the down button on my truck window. “Hey, I just bought this sandwich at Subway and was taking half of it home to my wife, but you’re welcome to it.” He jumps up and takes it with, “God bless you man, you may have saved my life.” I drive away and in my large truck side mirror see him unrolling the sandwich…for his dog.
Now, I love dogs and in retrospect am not the least unhappy about the dog getting fed, but I’m perturbed about the lie, and the fact I’m a sucker…again.
Giving anything to panhandlers just makes them convinced that they are smarter than you and I, and can live off the guilt that drives liberal thinking in this country where so many of us have so much (including those so-called poverty level folks, who, with cell phones and flat screen T.V.’s and warm roofs over their heads are ultra wealthy in the eyes of so much of the rest of the world). By the way, that bum who makes sixty thousand a year takes money from those poverty level folks who think him underprivileged. And, yes, he is very, very underprivileged: he’s not privileged to have any pride.
Tell the bums where the nearest shelter is, which they won’t go to because most shelters have rules, and their only rule is being able to con you.
L. J. Martin is the author of 30 book length works and the conservative blog, http://fromthepeapatch.com. He lives in Montana with his wife, who’s a best-selling author of romantic suspense. They winter in California, where both were born. For more see www.ljmartin.com and www.wolfpackranch.com.