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Donald Russell
Essay #2
March 30, 2011
F. Berkowitz
Christopher L. Awalt is an author who also volunteers at the Salvation Army and the soup kitchen in Austin Texas. During his volunteer work he has encountered many homeless people and feels that most of them have no aspiration to take responsibility for their lives and overcome their hardships. He feels that because of this they are to blame for their situation and do not deserve help offered to them unless they are willing to work hard. In his article “Brother, Don’t Spare a Dime” Awalt describes two types of homeless people temporarily homeless, and chronologically homeless. Awalt describes the people who are temporarily homeless as responsible citizens who have encountered some bad luck. They will be off the street eventually due to their perseverance and hard work to change their life around. These people are the exception to Awalt’s theory that spending money on the homeless is a waste of time. Awalt describes people who are chronologically homeless as people who choose their lifestyle and would rather beg on the street than get a hard earned pay check. Awalt’s theory is appropriate because each and every person has the right to want to have a job, and a place to live, but in order to attain these things they must be willing to work hard. Nobody can change their lifestyle choices for them. People can only offer them help, and it is the homeless person’s responsibility to take the help offered to them and use it to benefit themselves. Helping people who do not want to be helped is both a waste of time and money. There is no point giving the homeless money if they are just going to use it to buy substances to abuse. An example of this would be a time where I had seen a homeless man on the subway. He was begging for money and telling everyone around him that all he wanted was the chance to get a job and support himself. I felt sorry for this man and gave him five dollars only to later see him buy a beer...
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