Expectant giving

Handouts are wrong (usually)

A few months ago, I knowingly harmed an indigent woman named Jacqueline. She was standing at the end of the exit ramp, holding up the predictable sign: "Homeless. Please Help." I parked the car and doubled back to talk to her. She and her "old man" had come from a city a few hours east, she said. For the last few days they'd been sleeping under a small cluster of leafy trees a stone's throw from the Interstate.

I tried hard to persuade Jacqueline to let me take her to the Salvation Army shelter. I knew its directors and something of its programs and could attest to its safety and cleanliness. Jacqueline was adamantly opposed. In a few minutes I recognized that she wasn't quite all there mentally. Further debate was fruitless. And so I did what I almost never do. I gave Jacqueline a handout.


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