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#705185 - 08/02/11 03:43 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Jilly]
Phyllis Doyle Burns Offline
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity

Registered: 11/17/07
Posts: 17644
Loc: Reno, NV
Everyone was raised with certain words in their language that was handed down by parents, teachers, society, that is common is their local area. The word bum means different things to different societies/countries. The word vagrant, bum, tramp all mean the same thing in this context and is defined in dictionaries as "an idle person who wanders from place to place, has no permanent home and no livelihood."

My point is, it does not matter what we call them -- we each call them by the word that feels right to us. It does not mean that any one of us is wrong or that we are being "PC". The original question was "would you give money to (one of these people who wander around, idle, with no permanent home and no livelihood?")

I would not give money, as I stated earlier, but I would give food or clothing. I do not like to donate my unneeded clothing to stores that turn around and charge needy people too much for it. Extra jackets, hats, etc. I would much rather give to someone who needs them but has no money.

Shala, as Jilly and Steve say: you are a kind and lovely person. I think we can all learn from you in regards to this subject.

Walk in Peace and Harmony.
Phyllis Doyle Burns
Avatar: Fair Helena by Rackham, Public Domain

#705193 - 08/02/11 04:15 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Phyllis Doyle Burns]
Jilly Offline
BellaOnline Editor
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity

Registered: 02/26/03
Posts: 14392
Loc: Verde Valley, AZ
Phyllis, that is probably true about where we grew up and the word used. In New York where I grew up, the word "bum" was particularly used as an insult. Fathers would call their sons a 'bum,' for example, when feeling esp vicious.

For me the words tramp, hobo or vagrant have no charge behind them. In fact, hobo and tramp have romantic adventure connotations.

Vagrant, to me, is the word with the least amount of any sort of emotion attached to it.

#705213 - 08/02/11 06:08 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Jilly]
Phyllis Doyle Burns Offline
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity

Registered: 11/17/07
Posts: 17644
Loc: Reno, NV
Jilly, I tend to agree with you on using the term vagrant. It does have the least amount of negativity to it.

Hmmm...my Dad often called my brothers "You no good bum! Get off your lazy butt and do your chores!"

Hobo to me is a romantic and nostalgic term from the past. I remember all the kids in the neighborhood running and hiding if someone shouted "Hobo!!!" Our parents and grandparents put a fear in us about hobos and tramps. laugh

Edited by Phyllis-Folk/Myth (08/02/11 06:11 PM)
Walk in Peace and Harmony.
Phyllis Doyle Burns
Avatar: Fair Helena by Rackham, Public Domain

#705217 - 08/02/11 06:25 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Vanessa - Pregnancy]
Dawn - Alaska Offline

Registered: 03/30/11
Posts: 116
Loc: NW Austin, TX
Here in Austin, Tx, the issue is very prominent. I think because of the year round temps here. I tend to give bottled water, in the summer...it is 110 this week! Near the holidays is tough. I gave $20 to a lady who was on crutches, her husband in a wheelchair with both legs amputated! I rarely have cash on me, but I was holiday shopping that day.
I did get preturbed one day when a man stood at the intersection, yelling at a few of us at the light..."this could be you one day (@&^$^@W"."
I thought about it and while I feel anyone can have a rough spot, life is full of them, if you can think your way into it, you can think your way out of it.
Dawn Engler

#705219 - 08/02/11 06:30 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Dawn - Alaska]
Maria - Prime Time TV Offline
BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 02/22/09
Posts: 1263
Loc: Grayson, GA
I would like to say that I routinely give to money and time to charity (including weekly payroll deductions, soup kitchen volunteering, etc) however I don't usually give to people I see on the streets. A lot of the comments here have really given me a few great ideas that I would like to start doing. I especially like the ones about keeping extra jackets and fruit and granola bars.

That's one of the wonderful things about this forum. We come from all walks of life and have so many great things that we can share with each other.
Maria Brown, Editor

Prime Time TV Site
Prime Time TV Forum

#705231 - 08/02/11 07:29 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Maria - Prime Time TV]
Jilly Offline
BellaOnline Editor
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity

Registered: 02/26/03
Posts: 14392
Loc: Verde Valley, AZ
I agree about all the shared ideas, Maria!

I've also given out free bags of clothes. Even if all the stuff does not fit, they can pass them among their friends, or even stuff soft things into a cloth for use as a pillow, or to have around in place of towels or whatever.

In some countries ANY form of textile is worth gold. There are ragpickers who make a living finding cloth in trash heaps. I remind myself of these things before i throw anything away. smile

ps- Dawn, that is very nice of you to give out water.

Edited by Jilly (08/02/11 07:42 PM)

#705261 - 08/02/11 08:53 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: ShalasBeads]
Elleise - Clairvoyance Offline
BellaOnline Editor

Registered: 04/13/05
Posts: 4024
Loc: TX
I've done more and more Soul searching on this, which is why I really like this topic.

I used to just pull out whatever I had and unconditionally give maybe 25% or sometimes all of it, if i was headed home.

When I was on the road, though, sometimes you'd have to wait a day or two to get your next trucking assignment or you'd be in that same area for a month or so and we'd end up seeing the same people asking us for money but they wouldn't remember us. By days end, they'd pull out a wad of money, walk down the road, get in their car or head into apartments near by. It was just interesting.

They'd get $1-5.00 at the intersections, every few cars or so and they'd be asking for gas money over and over again, at the rest and truck stops. They actually made more money than we did and it was tax-free.

But people who truly are down on their luck, it doesn't bother me if they take the money I have and buy beer, hotdogs, cigarettes, twizzlers, whatever, etc. It's a gift and like Jilly said, it could be anyone of us some day. You just don't know. If it were, would judgement really help?

I always tell myself, no one starts out life with hopes and dreams of having to find a warm bed to sleep in, rumaging for food. Sometimes a decision or event (s) take place and it's just too much for a Soul to take. Maybe it's then that expectations seem more like a luxury item than anything else.
Karen Elleise
Clairvoyance Editor
Clairvoyance Site

#705263 - 08/02/11 09:32 PM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Elleise - Clairvoyance]
Julie - Computer Careers Offline

Registered: 08/10/06
Posts: 1169
Loc: Portland, OR, USA
When I lived in Portland, Sisters of the Road Cafe sold meal tickets and I'd give out those if people wanted them. (In my first full-time job I worked nearby and my coworkers ate there when money was tight, I only didn't as I found the rice and peanut sauce at the bento place more filling for the same price. You can also work for a meal there.) If people ask for food and I have my lunch with me, I'll offer them half. When I get samples of dog food or have dog stuff I can't use anymore (for instance, my dog changed vitamins due to a change in her health), I give them to people living rough (as it is usually called here) who have dogs. (And I often pass out tennis balls as I usually have one in my car.) I rarely give money directly (maybe once a year) and always to people who are part of my route/neighborhood where I know the story.

For a while I was counting the number of times people asked me for change or I saw someone with a sign and at the end of the month I'd add $.25 to my Kiva account for each one. I'm not doing that anymore, but the money is still rotating through Kiva.

Julie Baumler
Computer Careers Editor
Computer Careers Forum

#705303 - 08/03/11 03:53 AM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: Phyllis Doyle Burns]
ExerciseEditor Offline

Registered: 04/02/02
Posts: 4906
Everybody posted such awesome comments and I wish I could reply to all. Phyllis your stories were great and since the original post was about something that happened to my boyfriend, I mentioned your comments to him and he thought your story about hobos was very funny. His exact words were "a kid in one of those vagabond sacks!" He's Aussie so in his language hobo=vagabond and to him vagrant=criminal (which is my feeling too).

I actually looked up all these words for fun and the definition for hobo was "an itinerant worker, a career which sprang up during the depression. A hobo, unlike a bum or a tramp, is more than willing to work, but mostly for a short duration, as their main impetus is travel, the love of the journey above the actual destination." I thought this was very interesting. I remember saying to my parents that I would run off and be a hobo if they didn't back off one time. I got smacked for that (LOL).

I actually love the word Bum and find it's a harmless word. Burgess Meredith calls Rocky a bum (he had a home and a job just the wrong mindset). In an Animaniacs parody of Rocky, the coach pigeon calls the boxer pigeon a bumsicle which is even funnier because it means "A person who is so lathargic they never move and steadily gain mass as they develop into a large lazy lardass i.e. Ryan is such a bumsicle, he stays in bed all day, plays Pokemon on his DS and constantly orders delivery." This is from urban dictionary.

Ski Bum
Beach Bum
Bum a cigarrete
Bumming Around (Dean Martin song)
Bumming around the house (what my rich clients do all weekend)
The Dharma Bums (amazing book by Jack Kerouac)
B.U.M. Equipment (popular brand of clothing from the 80's)
None of these sound negative to me.

Vagrancy on the other hand has a very negative connotation "In colonial America, if a person wandered into a town and did not find work, he/she was told to leave town or be prosecuted. In the U.S., vagrancy laws were vague and covered a wide range of activities and crimes associated with vagrants, such as loitering, prostitution, drunkenness, and associating with known criminals. Under the vagrancy laws, police arrested people who were suspected of crime, but who had not committed a crime. Eventually, punishments were changed to a fine, or several months in jail.

After the U.S. Civil War, the South passed Black Codes, laws that tried to control freed black slaves. Vagrancy laws were included in these codes. Homeless unemployed black Americans were arrested and fined as vagrants. Usually, the person could not afford the fine, and so was sent to county labor or hired out to a private employer.

In the U.S. of the 1960s, vagrancy laws were found to be too broad and vague, and in violation of the due process requirements of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, as citizens were not informed of which behaviors were illegal. Police had too much power in deciding whether or not to arrest someone. Vagrancy laws could no longer violate Freedom of Speech, such as when police use them against political demonstrators and unpopular groups. U.S. vagrancy laws became clearer, narrower, and more defined. Since then, the status of being a vagrant is punished by the vagrancy laws, while other actions are punished under other laws."

It was Dawn who said exactly what I was thinking which is
if you can think your way into it, you can think your way out of it.

I strongly believe in law of attraction and also my parents (who both grew up in Mexico) instilled the belief that if you end up on the streets it's by choice. There are many options when life gets hard. Living on the streets is only one option. There are many others.

I don't know who said it but the belief that "this can happen to any of us" is just not a belief I have. I don't have it period. I believe that our thoughts/beliefs create our reality. If you believe you can end up on the streets then that is quite possible. If not then it is impossible. That is the basic idea behind law of attraction and I strongly believe that you attract what you believe.

Monica Neave ISSA Certified Fitness Therapist

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#705309 - 08/03/11 04:29 AM Re: Do you give money to bums? [Re: ExerciseEditor]
Phyllis Doyle Burns Offline
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity

Registered: 11/17/07
Posts: 17644
Loc: Reno, NV
Monica, I am happy to know your boyfriend enjoyed my story. My siblings and I talk about our childhood when we get together and the story of the hobos and tramps always come up. We can so remember Grandma standing on the back porch, shaking her finger at us, and telling us to "stay clear of the railroad and watch out for hobos."

My goodness -- we now have a lot of different names for the people who wander and beg. I think we should as a group come up with a whole new term for these unfortunate people. Since they do not own anything that needs monthly payments and they have no responsibilities to worry about, I think the word "carefree" would be nice. laugh "Unfortunates"?

What does anyone else think we should call them? Since Steve says to him "bum" means what they sit on, I think I will never call a person a bum again. smile

Edited by Phyllis-Folk/Myth (08/03/11 04:36 AM)
Walk in Peace and Harmony.
Phyllis Doyle Burns
Avatar: Fair Helena by Rackham, Public Domain

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