Homeless in an insensate world
The numbers of homeless are growing all over the world. I’ve heard there’s a worldwide housing crisis. The have-nots now have no homes. They lounge on your streets, exhausted and weary from weather and strife, or they hang at street corners with signs and wait for a dollar every now and then. You stop at the light, they are looking at you. You look away or maybe find some change. We feel sorry but can’t do much for them.
In today’s world, the poor are getting poorer. In our own hometown, the population grew so fast that the rents rose so high forcing people either to the streets or far out the city itself. I’ve been to a hearing at the state capitol for a bill called The Right to Rest, but the legislators were sleeping and picking their noses. The restaurateurs were anxious to make sure the homeless couldn’t sit or lie down anywhere in the city. The mayor’s henchmen continued to confiscate their tents and blankets.
The rents again just recently rose in Denver. It’s outrageous trying to live as a renter. The renters are the layer of societal have-nots that barely pass muster in the new Denver with its pseudo-sophisticated inheritors of the city on the plains. Anyone could get homeless but it seems the renters get homeless more often at the mercy of landlords who often don’t care about people but just money. The same happens in the other big cities; now even the smaller cities. It’s scary. It could happen to a mom or dad or teenager or little kids in sad families and the haves don’t care. They just think it’s a shame they have to even see them: the new untouchables.
The homeless are all kinds of people. Some are drug addicts or alcoholics or mentally ill people. It doesn’t really matter how they got there. They are people. They are veterans of wars -- the champions of our war loving society. They’re on the corner with a sign. How does that make you feel, America? Seriously, how does it feel to send soldiers into war, break them into smithereens, and just abandon them to the streets?
But these days, it seems people think in memes. You can only help one group at a time, apparently. It’s like people who decide they can only do one thing a day. You can’t solve all the problems, so what about this or what about that? What-aboutism is the biggest fallacy in thinking of all and prevents us from helping all the people: the refugees in cages, the vets, the homeless, the sick, the overworked, underpaid renters. Everybody needs help and deserves it. It isn’t all about all this other stuff. Fix it all now, damn it!
As my brother just pointed out, the idea of treating one segment of the population better than another is one of the recognized markers of genocide. No one segment of the population deserves humanity more than any other. The world does this to the poor everywhere, as if the poor and homeless deserve to be poor and homeless – kind of an American philosophy, I guess. If you’re poor it’s your fault and God hates you. If you’re rich it’s because you’re virtuous and God loves you. Imagine a world like that! I don’t have to.
Photo by Matt Collamer on Unsplash