Friday, November 18, 2011


CEO of the Long Beach Rescue Mission, Jim Lewis supports the new beggary law. Press-Telegram article says he said  that giving money to homeless persons can enable them to continue a street life rather than work to get out of it.

Huh? I tried for a year to get off the streets via the Mission's Lydia House, which is across the street from the Mission which houses men. Panhandling was not for me, but at times people handed me money. That was a very welcome treat. That little bit of cash would hardly "enable" me to continue a street life. I had read so often that "they do not avail themselves of services", so that when I returned to Long Beach, my intention was to avail myself ~ get help needed to get me off the streets and gainfully employed. A year. That did not happen.

I wrote all about it. A shame it is now all on a disc the F-drive refuses to acknowledge, despite that same F-drive moving all my documents onto said discs. An alcoholic Vietnam veteran living on the streets is not going to be changed by not being allowed to ask for spare change to get a beer. An alcoholic is going to get a drink by any means they can. I have known them.

Maybe Mr. Lewis is enabling homeless people to continue a street life by feeding them Thanksgiving meals. Or providing shelter for people like Walkabout Michael. Michael had his own agenda for his own reasons. The Mission in Long Beach was but a temporary place for him to sleep indoors. Then there were the other long time Long Beach homeless I met while on the streets. They had a system of using shelters such as the Mission that worked for them and continued the homeless life. Most of those were not like Michael in that he volunteered at churches; he also panhandled as he walked around the country. Enabled? Whatever.

No comments: