Johnny, a man in his twenties is apparently about to give a homeless man some change.
Hold on a sec - I think I have something for you. - STOP - Now, I know what you are thinking. You’re thinking that not only did this - stranger - this man with his scraggly, greasy beard - this down and out man - this beggar, probably a sex offender, or drug addict, or worse - not only did this man walk up to me and assault my nose with his offensive smell, but he actually had the audacity - considering these hard economic times - to ask me for change. You’re thinking that this criminal - this panhandler not only asked ME for change, but I - a starving college student with barely a penny to my name - am about to give it to him. And if I do - well - then you’re going to think that in some way - somehow - I’ve been ripped off. You’re going to think that I’ve been duped - hoodwinked - played for a fool. You’ll think that somehow this - sorry excuse for a human being has somehow conned an educated man. And maybe you’re right. Maybe he is just a scam artist in some not - so - pretty packaging. Maybe he is a liar, and that life story he told - his car parked and out of gas - his three starving children - his pregnant wife in a shelter - maybe you’re right to think that was all a sham. Just maybe.
How do you know? How can you be sure? I don’t think you’re a psychic. I think that maybe - more and likely - you have no idea whether or not this guy is for real. How can you tell? Then again, how do I know he’s not lying through his broken - yellowed teeth? Who knows? what if this guy came up and specifically asked for change for a beer? Would he be telling the truth? I think - and don’t quote me on this - that most of the time people probably think that he is lying unless he says that he is looking for beer money. That’s the thing though. Lets say - lets say that he is starving. Lets say that he has had no food for three days - lets say he is on the verge of shoplifting, but he really does not want to. How many people will actually believe him if he tells the truth? If he doesn’t tell the truth - if he tells you that its for beer, or pot, or whatever - then we can excuse our generosity by saying “at least he’s being honest” right? How do you know he is being honest? You don’t - and neither do I. I think - however - that it is better to give the benefit of the doubt to ten liars, then deny one honest man.
Here you go man, go take care of your wife.
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