Monday, December 21, 2015

Normal People

What is the problem with the homeless? Why don't they get jobs and homes? Why can't they just get on their feet and help themselves?
It's because "normal" people won't let them.
According to sociological studies, the majority American response to a homeless individual is one of instant disgust and fear, even though they haven't met the person. Neighborhoods assume that if there's a homeless camp, then there is a higher instance of crime and drugs, even if the statistics don't bear that out.
The homeless suffer because of this blatant bigotry. They are not given the opportunity for a job, their family sees them as unworthy of help, their neighbors call the cops on them although they aren't doing anything, but trying to catch up on sleep.
The first thing we can do to help the homeless is to stop this prejudice in ourselves, in our friends and on those online who tell evil, untrue stories about the homeless.
If we want the homeless to live better, then we, as a society, need to treat them as human beings-- not as the pariah of society, not as the object of our pity, not as criminals or outcasts-- but just normal human people, the equal to us. If we treat the homeless as people then instead of seeing a "homeless" person in our neighborhood, it's just a person. Instead of seeing "homeless" people in the park, they are just people. Instead of seeing "homeless" people getting food in the church next door, they're just people at a meal.
You'd be surprised how less drama we have in our lives when we see people as just normal people.

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