November 9, 2001    





If a bum on the street asks you for money, do you give any to him/her?

As a rule no. I got so overwhelmed with the number of folks asking for cash when I lived in NYC, I made a pledge not to give out money to anyone. Rather, I have set my charitable giving priorities and pump my cash into these endeavors.

Felicia, 35
, MA   USA

These days I don't encounter many panhandlers--except for certain irresponsible family members. I prefer to make my charitable donations to accredited organizations or to individuals whom I know to be both needy and worthy. Every Christmas, I do make a donation to the Salvation

Jill, 60

Once in a while. After years in NYC, where many of the beggars were known to be fraudulent, I am very wary.

Jane, 62
West Linn
, OR   USA

You mean a random talking ass? I don't mean to get overly PC, but come'on! Why even calling homeless peoples a Hobo would be better then calling them bums.

Jaden, 21
Brampton, Ontario  CANADA

Absolutely, if I have it. I've even been known to strike up conversation. However, my roomate and I have both talked about and agreed that if we see the same one all the time (like on the same subway train everynite) and is just plain begging, we usually dont. Every now and then a really super polite person will come up to us and ask for money and we never turn them down.

Ry, 23

I usually don't on account of wondering what they do with it, but sometimes I do give them whatever change is in my pocket at the time.

Tracy, 24
Ocean City

If anything, just some change if I have it handy. Maybe if I had more to give I would - but right now, I'd rather give my own daughter any extra money I might have, or tuck it into a piggy bank for her.

Fisch, 46
, CT   USA

Not anymore. I got tired of people complaining that I didn't give them enough.

Alias Irrelevante

Sometimes... it depends.

Maggie, 22
, IL    USA

Usually not. It's hard enough to fully trust the people I know.

Firelady, 23
, TX   USA

No.He's already smoked all my ciggarettes and is trying to lick my friend.

A-Dog, 18

It depends on how much money I have...I might give him/her $5.

Melodi, 19
, OH   USA

Yes. Whatever you have done to the least, you have done to me.

Laura, 36
, MA   USA

Never, to be honest.

Dianne, 17
Ontario  CANADA

It depends. I'm usually pretty strapped for money myself; I don't carry more   money with me than I intend to use so I'm usually telling the truth when I say I don't have any change to spare. when I do have extra, sure. I give 'em money. There was a brief time when I was 15 that I did some panhandling; I had run away from home and was trying honestly to keep myself fed.

Johanna, 18

It depends on my mood I guess, but usually yes...I like to think that that money isn't going towards alcohol or something, even though society is pretty driven to believe that in most cases.

Angela, 18
Bella Vista

For many years, it was a 'policy' of mine to never give a bum money. But a few years ago, I had a change of heart and I now give handouts. Why? As Christians, we are to share our blessings with those who have none. When we do this, God sees into our heart and knows our intentions are admirable and because we have done the right thing, He blesses us. It doesn't really matter to Him what the bum uses the money for. All that matters is that we were willing to share what we had.

Reba, 50+
Silver Spring

I have never encountered a "bum". I don't really know how I would react if I were asked for money on the street. That is a situation that I hope to avoid the remainder of my life.

Aaron, 22

Bums on the street don't ask me for money.

Karen, 22

I always try to give htem some money when i have it to spare. I once had one  homeless man come up t me and my boyfriend and serenade us with his acustic guitar for about 15 minutes and me and my boyfriend were dancing in the street....we gave him about 30 dollars.

Nicole2, 20

I usually don't. Around here, homeless or very poor people will take your money and use it for alcohol and not use it for food or shelter. The best you can give them is a card to a homeless shelter or even a gift certificate to a fast food place so you know they will use it there.

Stephanie, 25

sometimes, when I have


No. I work hard to earn my money and I guess I don't see why they should have it. And another thought that goes through my mind is - are they going to use it to by alcohol or drugs? I don't want to support their habit. I have given them food before however.

Celeste, 30
Colorado Springs

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