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Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:06 AM

Searching For a Place to Sleep

http://www.alternet.org/hard-times-usa/searching-place-sleep



The Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head. —Matthew: 8:20

For four years, I’ve been homeless and mostly living outside. Finally, finally, I was able to get an SRO (single room occupancy in a multiple tenant building) in Chicago. It was great until I awoke and discovered it was infested with bedbugs and I was covered with their bites.

Nobody should have to sleep outside. I mean that. I think of all the guys who do. It is not something you want to do.

I’ve done a lot of things to survive. We all do. I’ve been through a couple of blizzards and some really cold times. And we got wet at times, really wet.

The first day I had no roof to stay under, I walked and walked until two or three o’clock in the morning. Finally, I went in a doorway and up some stairs. I slept next to somebody’s apartment and made certain I got up before they came out of it.

21 replies, 2404 views

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Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply Searching For a Place to Sleep (Original post)
xchrom Feb 2013 OP
handmade34 Feb 2013 #1
DaveJ Feb 2013 #5
Divernan Feb 2013 #2
Demo_Chris Feb 2013 #3
Blanks Feb 2013 #4
DaveJ Feb 2013 #6
IrishAyes Feb 2013 #11
DearHeart Feb 2013 #12
Blanks Feb 2013 #14
DearHeart Feb 2013 #15
IrishAyes Feb 2013 #16
Blanks Feb 2013 #18
IrishAyes Feb 2013 #20
Hotler Feb 2013 #7
Mojorabbit Feb 2013 #8
rustydog Feb 2013 #9
mojowork_n Feb 2013 #10
mnhtnbb Feb 2013 #13
lonestarnot Feb 2013 #17
WillyT Feb 2013 #19
Liberal_in_LA Feb 2013 #21

Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:44 AM

1. Matthew 25:45

‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

Though I am not one to quote the bible (even as a former seminarian that thinks the bible has a few nice stories) ...oh, thee people of 'faith', you seem to like it. (not you DU'ers, the rest of them ) Collectively, we are a cruel people.

I had the fortune of being homeless at one time (fortunate in that I experienced it, survived it and was able to develop an appropriate empathy for those that suffer). Sometimes I want to just scream at our collective population...

what the f@*k are we doing to each other???? I do what I can...

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Response to handmade34 (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:50 AM

5. The church helped me when I was homeless

After about 7 months I found a Catholic Charities that set me up with a little apartment (more like a cabin) free for the first month and then I was able to get a job and return to college. Nobody else cared, people just walked past me. I can't even begin to describe people's reactions, but they were less than un-helpful. Not intentionally on their part, it's just a characteristic of our species. I was kicked out of 3 other places in less than a week each, including a Salvation Army for getting back late one night, another for not wearing my shoes, the others I think I just didn't fit in. Exhibiting the least amount of thinking for yourself was grounds for getting kicked out of those places.

Anyway, in spite of have a belief that seems irrational, it's good that there are such organizations that attempt to perform good deeds, just for spiritual, non-greed based, reasons. It's not necessary for them to be Christian, but it seems like in this country, the Christians have a monopoly on organizations that help people.

On a side note, that place was small but one of the nicest I'd lived in, it was wooded, had a bike trail, but it was a small town. I'd imagine most cities, at least the cold ones, would be nightmarish places to be homeless.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:28 AM

2. Echoes of the Great Depression

"Editor's Note: The following is an excerpt from The Book of the Poor: Who They Are, What They Say, and How To End Their Poverty. T.M.’s story was written in the spring of 2012. (T.M. is in his fifties and has been living on the street, off and on, for a majority of those years.)"

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:14 AM

3. Kick for later reading

 

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:42 AM

4. It is especially tragic that we have homeless...

When there are more empty houses than homeless people.

Not to mention empty schools (with large tracts of land) empty factories (with empty parking lots) and empty Walmart buildings (with even more empty parking lots).

There is no excuse; a country with that kind of unutilized resources has people sleeping in the elements without the ability to grow some of their own food.

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Response to Blanks (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 09:05 AM

6. We are not as socialized as we'd like to think.

People are just mean to one another, plain and simple.

It's very rare that people help others for any reason that doesn't involve greed.

We are evolved from monkeys and rats, two animals that do not have the best reputation for being altruistic.

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Response to Blanks (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:07 PM

11. Squatting

What became of the squatter movement? I don't mean where people claimed ownership, but rather they moved into unoccupied houses for various lengths of time until the places sold or rented out. When I first heard of it, the banks and law officials sort of turned a blind eye so long as there was no trouble, because the houses were actually safer from vandals that way. I thought it was a good idea. Maybe it was too good to last.

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Response to Blanks (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:49 PM

12. I've thought of that also. There has to be a solution to this!

I know that part of it is the cost of the damned land, but why can't some of the buildings be repurposed into apartments? We have a hospital, about 10 or so miles from here, sitting completely empty (might be taken over by the VA, might not), but you could turn that empty hospital into low cost apartments-Even has restaurants and a cafeteria in there!

Someone has got to have the ideas and the means necessary to help get these poor people off of the street! We're getting no where, waiting for the wealthy and the powerful to wake up and help; only problem is, they have all the $$$$$!

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Response to DearHeart (Reply #12)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:15 PM

14. The soldiers in the revolutionary war...

Were given land. The federal government owns a lot if these houses. There should be a program where veterans are given a house.

The problem with vacant buildings is if someone tries to fill them with homeless; surrounding property owners fight it at city council meetings.

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Response to Blanks (Reply #14)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:28 PM

15. That's what I thought...as far as the vacant properties. That sucks!

Never knew that about the revolutionary war. Very interesting and yes, there should be a program where veterans are given a house. They deserve it! Not to mention that a large part of the homeless population are vets, so the government should do that, since they already own the properties!

There is a movie called "It Happened on 5th Avenue", made in 1947 and part of the plot was about returning WWII vets and their families who were facing a housing shortage. The vets and their spouses were trying to buy a closed army base/barracks to help with the shortage, thought it was an interesting idea. I guess that was influencing me. Wish something like that could happen, but unfortunately, I'm just a dreamer.

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Response to Blanks (Reply #14)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:32 AM

16. Furthermore,

... anyone who fought in the Revolutionary War was granted automatic citizenship.

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Response to IrishAyes (Reply #16)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 07:21 PM

18. Except the French soldiers.

If I remember my history correctly. The French sided with the Americans during the revolutionary war (because they didn't like England).

They sent their peasantry who, upon seeing that others were given their freedom; took up the cause for their own freedom once they got back home. IIRC

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Response to Blanks (Reply #18)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 06:57 PM

20. Well Said

And that's only one reason I've always been uncommonly fond of the French. Without them we might never have succeeded. BTW, have you ever read of the time Thomas Paine spent across the pond? Odds are you have. He was a most fascinating character.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 09:09 AM

7. Fucking sad. n/t

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:37 PM

8. marking to read later! nt

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:49 PM

9. Homelessness is an issue I struggle with. I can't stand it when people go to public meetings

to bitch about a tent city coming to their neighborhoods (God forbid). They don't want the homeless there.
Although, if you think about it, some homeless are probably there, they just don't see them.

A couple of months back a homeless male was brought into our ER by medics. We had a few days of constant biblical deluge and it was down right nasty outside. This poor guy was sopping wet. He asked for a shower and the nurse treated him like shit, basically saying this was not the "mission". We were called because he lost his temper and became verbally abusive. All I heard him say is: "I've been homeless for two fucking years! I'm sick of it.I'm tired, I'm cold and fucking wet and I stink. Please just let me take a shower, let me feel human Goddamn it." Hesaid a whole lot more, but that is what I heard. The nurse heard a scumbag demand something.

Why not let this gentleman take a shower after being evaluated? Who does it harm? Why not bring up a good hot breakfast for the human being?

I hear co-workers speak so disparagingly about the homeless and addicts. Like there is no way they could suffer this humiliating type of set-back. Jesus, there are peopleI work with who insist it is a life-style choice, a weakness of character!

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 10:45 PM

10. The same page had another alarming story on the same topic...

http://www.alternet.org/speakeasy/tana-ganeva/woman-goes-undercover-homeless-shelter-pressured-sex-finds-shocking-abuses

"...a Tallahassee woman who works with a Christian group that helps the homeless, went undercover to check out a local shelter after hearing reports of abuse. She claims that immediately upon arrival she was sexually propositioned by a staff member:

He said, "Okay, well here is my number. Call me and we can hook up later tonight."

Did I just get propositioned by a staff member? I was infuriated but did not want to break my cover..."

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:58 PM

13. We will undoubtedly be adding to the homeless population here in NC

now that our a$$hole Governor has signed a bill significantly reducing
unemployment insurance benefits.

See my thread: http://www.democraticunderground.com/1251288565

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 09:38 AM

17. I lay awake nights thinking about you.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 07:23 PM

19. K & R !!!


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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 07:00 PM

21. kick

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