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LOL....I know their stories significantly better then you do....obviously. In fact, I dated one of the girls who I ended up serving at St. Francis Chapel.
Her name is Tracey and I dated her in High School and now she lives on the streets. Not because her life was miserable but because she met the wrong guy who introduced her to cocaine while she was working for the state. She was looking for some fun and he showed her the "fast life".
Well, she ended up getting hooked on cocaine...lost her cushie state job, her home, and her family. She had a good life and she blew it....not because she was in pain living some awful life but because she wanted to be with the "in" crowd.
Studies show that about 20% of addicts do not have a major trauma history, but in all honesty you really don't know what Tracy's life was like. Trauma is not usually the kind of the thing people share about themselves. In addition, Tracy perhaps was not attracted to the kind of men who had compassion and empathy, with whom she would share such information. It seems the more you worked with those who struggle, the poor you scorn them. The more I work with them, the more I admire how they survived the enormous obstacles that fate put in front of them. Nonetheless, maybe your experiences with the poor have been much different than mine. In my work, I have been astonished by the horrors that abound in our society. I can't tell you how many times a client has shocked me with stories from his or her childhood. There are acts of cruelty done to or witnessed by children that not even tv and movies prepares one for. But what astounds me most is how commonplace these things are, yet how unaware we as a society are aware of these problems.
You really have zero clue what it's like to work with the homeless....you really do. I was there for 5 years...not just a holiday weekend or for some school project....but consistently. I know what I saw...week after week. We had our regulars....hundreds of them. They weren't asking for help to change...they were using us so that they could have more money for drugs and alcohol.
Have more of a clue than you will ever know.. spent my professional life working amongst the poor and downtrodden in many settings in both private and public settings... if you went to cure folks, then you had unreal expectations... you worked in a soup kitchen, whose purpose is to feed the poor.. not make changes in a person's lifestyle.
Most systems are curative, rather than preventative... and what you consistently discount is the prevalence of mental illness amongst this population.
What I can never understand are those who wear their relgious beliefs on their sleeves and will get into a bully pulpit and ponitificate pious platitudes aobut things like annulment whenever they get a chance.. however deny the basic tenet of organized christian religion.. i.e. the Beatitudes and the Golden Rule...
Last thread on this you made commentary about how the homeless would go to Newport to panhandle, perhaps you were not aware that Newport has its own shelter in the old Navy YMCA...
That to whom much is given, much is expected... if you expected any more than to give someone a full belly, then you were in this service for the wrong reasons..
If I ran a shelter or soup kitchen and you came to volunteer, and told me how you wanted to change people and you explained that the issue with alcoholics and drug addicts was a matter or self control.. I would counsel you out, as you would be innapropriate for the mission of the shelter or soup kitchen.
BTW here is your commentary from a previous post.. makes me feel all warm and fuzzy when I reread it...
Originally Posted by RI Patriots fan
I didn't work in a shelter. I worked to feed the poor, not shelter them.
Providence doesn't allow pan handling either but it still happens...lol. I know for a fact it happens in Newport because I've heard them talking about "the best spots", etc. on more than one occassion.
Of course overcoming alcoholism and drug addiction is a matter of self control. I know functioning alcoholics and drug addicts who choose not to drink and who choose not to take drugs.
Out of the thousands of homeless people I interacted with, a vast majority didn't appear to have any obvious mental illness. Can I diagnose them, obviously not....but I know what I hear and I know what I see. The homeless advocates include drug use and alcohol use as mental illness in their demographics but they never reveal that breakdown in their numbers. It's just another lie told by those who work with the homeless.
People start with dignity and then they decide to give it away. There is a right way and a wrong way to live our lives and if we make bad choices then we need to deal with the consequences.
I have far less sympathy for those in the US who have the opportunity to go to school and live the American dream but waste it on drugs or alcohol or promiscuity.
I would much rather help those who don't have that opportunity through no fault of their own.
“We like to say that dependability is more important than ability,” Bill Belichickism....
And no one will wonder why this homeless man didn't have shoes but had clothes and a jacket....hmmm.
As part of our outreach in Providence, we used to give away boots to the homeless. Over time, we noticed that the "need" for boots was increasing significantly. Guess why......the homeless were taking the boots we gave them and selling them to buy drugs and alcohol.
I'm a big teach a man to fish guy, but helping someone in crisis trumps that. First things first. Outreach programs can be taken advantage of by people that want to play the system. Of course they should be on guard for that because it does enable. This though was a spontaneous act of compassion. Maybe the homeless guy was thinking, "sucker", who knows? Maybe he appreciated it for what it was too. Personally, I found it heartwarming. Stories like this restores some faith I sometimes lose in mankind with all the treachery that goes on in the world. Call me a bleeding heart conservative. Good cop. We need more of them.
People should only help people who actually want help and are willing to better themselves.
Really? So we shouldn't help children, people who are mentally disabled or psychologically ill? Maybe those people who need help don't have the capacity to "want to improve their lives" or are incapable of any improvement, not to mention asking for it.
You're an addiction expert. Maybe you have taken the mantra of the 12 steps too seriously- especially the first one. THere are lots of people out there who have either forgotten that they are mentally ill and different, and others who may have never known they have a problem and don't recognize how different they are and think we're the ones who have the problem.
There's all kinds of people out there who can't make better lives for themselves and will forever be dependent on the charity and kindness of their fellow human beings, whether they realize it or not. What do you do with them? Round them up and throw them in a building to let them starve and freeze?