Panhandling, Gone Too Far?
“Starving please help” In todays decaying economy there is an increasing number of homeless people living in the streets. With this increase in numbers more and more people are seen asking for money at intersections, parks, and in front of businesses. Panhandling laws exist but are rarely enforced due to the panhandlers using the first amendments, freedom of speech, as a means to avoid getting in trouble or insufficient funding of law enforcement. This should be a public concern because panhandlers’ standing around intersections is very dangerous and also discourage tourists and families that go to businesses where panhandlers are known to congregate. The absence of enforcement of these laws, I believe, cause beggars and panhandlers to stay in their current financial state and never want to try to get off the streets because of the amount of money they make from friendly civilians. Common sights at any major intersection nowadays are panhandlers. These people usually stand on the side of the road holding up signs and have a sad look on their face. This is a major public safety concern because walking in the middle of a busy intersection is just asking to be hit by a distracted driver that may be on their phone or a woman doing her makeup. KTSM, a news station in El Paso, reported a truck hit a 48-year-old man. “Police say this incident serves as an example of the dangers panhandlers, and those who give to them, create.” (Pg.1) Cecil Thompson, a panhandler in Chicago, admits panhandling is dangerous and some are hit by cars. “One of them I know got his toes ran over,” he said. “You can get side-swiped. You get hit by a mirror.” (CBS Chicago pg.10) If even panhandlers admit what they do is dangerous, one can’t help but think something should be done about this public safety issue. Not only are cars dangerous to panhandlers, but any person walking up to stranger may also be in danger. In Albuquerque, New Mexico, a panhandler was...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document