I believe people in general are afraid of the unknown so when they encounter a disheveled man sleeping in a tent on the sidewalk, they move away. Who does this? And in my neighborhood!
Our family visits homeless encampments to talk to people-to understand why they are living on the streets and what we have learned will surprise you. Not once have we felt that we were in danger and in fact, many of these people once had normal lives. Many are veterans and all have had circumstances that left them no choice but to live on the street. Sure, there is the drug problem and the alcohol abuse and many have been asked to leave their homes because of destructive behavior, but they are still people.
They may have gone to school with your kids. Some may have once sat next to you in church or played sports at your local high school. Yes, they made bad choices and all have admitted this to us and in many ways, society has exacerbated their demise by offering painkillers or taken away the mental health facilities they need.
These are not excuses, but they have to live somewhere and as a nation isn’t it our responsibility to help.?