Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Skilled Labor Needed

Yesterday, while I was driving into the city, I saw a bestraggled looking young man holding a sign that said, 'Out Of Work. Donations appreciated. God Bless' standing on the side of the road. About a block down, near campus, there was a young woman with a sign that said, 'Help, Homeless'. She looked pretty down on her luck too. Then, not a street later, there were some clean (slightly bored, yet rested) looking college aged people holding up signs advertising for a local pizza joint. '2 pies for 10 dollars'. When I drove past the pizza joint, there was a help wanted sign in the window.

If you're going to be a liberal in this country, stock up on mouthwash.


Willie Y said...

So what I think you are saying is that a great number of the homeless people are homeless by choice.

According to a December, 2000 report of the US Conference of Mayors:
single men comprise 44 percent of the homeless, single women 13 percent, families with children 36 percent, and unaccompanied minors seven percent.
the homeless population is about 50 percent African-American, 35 percent white, 12 percent Hispanic, 2 percent Native American and 1 percent Asian.

Spencer Troxell said...

I'm not necessarily saying that, Willie. I'm just saying that there are people who game the system. Social programs may work widely, but when you see someone clearly not trying to pull their own weight, it can leave a bad taste in your mouth, even if you do support those social programs. In fact, because I do support a lot of social programs, it bothers me even more when people don't seem to be trying. The people I saw holding those signs were young, healthy looking people. They were both wearing clothes (designer bohemian look) that are more expensive than the clothes I wear. I don't believe any social system will lead to utopia. Honest Libertarians have to look their inevitable robber barons and pirates in the eye, and Socialists have to accept that there will be leeches attached to their great societies. Our job is to find the best balance between the two systems. This blog was about my visceral reaction to an absurd seeming situation that I actually witnessed.

mather said...

I have no idea why Willie thought it necessary to give those statistics.

It has always been a pet peave of mine when panhandlers are dressed better than I am, and look healthier too!

The real crazies who are too fucked up to even negotiate the system are pretty obvious. All you've got to do is look in their eyes, look in their faces, look at their beaten bodies, which is not always easy to do. The real down-outers are easy to spot, and I usually give them a buck if I have it. The others, like you said (in so many words): fuck them.

GbiZ said...

It doesn't take much effort to dress better or look healthier than me.

crackers said...

a lot of the worst case scenarios, the one's with bipolar and other disorders are on government programs and just can't take care of themselves. they're not out panhandling but they get pulled into the hospital (LA County) and the routine is to wash them up/sober them up and ship them out, and many of the times i find huge amounts of money on their persons. if they can work, fuck them. is right.