Am I allowed to tell the truth on this blog or am I going to have to avoid certain unpleasant subjects so as to avoid embarrassing other people?
I want to tell you why it is that I never give anything at all to any of those “Charitable” outfits that stand on street corners and inside of some retail establishment lobbies during certain sacred seasons.
I am not going to name these organizations but I am sure that if you are a human being, you have, at one time or another, encountered them during the holidays, singing their carols, playing their saxophones and violins, standing faithfully beside their little buckets that you are supposed to reach into your pocket and get out some money and cast it in to the buckets as the cheery-faced attendant wishes you the merriest of all seasons.
If you are very lucky, the charity collector might even bestow a blessing of God upon you before you take your leave from the somewhat emotion-driven scene.
I would like to inject a thought here …A “God Bless You” spoken from the lips of hypocrites has never filled the belly of a hungry soul or wrapped them in a blanket of warmth or given them a pair of socks for their naked feet in the dead of winter.
I am often told about all the good work that some of these organizations do … helping the poor and the needy … and whatever else it is they are reported to do.
Back in or about the year 1978 I myself was about as poor and needy as anybody could get.
I had lost my good-paying job at a major automobile manufacturing plant in Detroit, Michigan, had declared bankruptcy, had lost everything I had ever worked for … watched my family leave me and return to our old town in a Midwestern state and was, more or less, living on the streets once in awhile, in a friend’s house for a night or two …and there was no work to be found at the time.
So I made the decision to visit the headquarters of one of these charitable organizations to see if there was anything they could do to help me. I went for a couple of days every week with nothing to eat except for the discarded sandwiches that a fast food restaurant had thrown, still warm and fully wrapped, into their dumpster.
All this happened long before I chose the path toward my ambition to raise myself from poverty and head for the seemingly impossible world of the very wealthy …In fact, it was this time of desperation that fired my ambitions to do something to earn tons of money …but that is another story altogether.
I went to the headquarters of the charity organization and met with a high-ranking official in his very well appointed office … I would even go so far as to say “A luxurious office” …. lots of polished wooden panels, deep plush rugs on the floors, spic and span clean …
I poured my heart out to this individual … this high-ranking charity guy … the manager of the entire operation … the man who could speak the magic words to somebody lower on the totem pole than he was … and get something done to help me become a little bit more stable and a little less hungry. I just knew in my heart that God would touch this man’s soul and get me the help I needed.
We spent about an hour talking back and forth and he finally informed me that he didn’t have a single blessed thing to offer to me. Nothing. Nada. No place to sleep off the streets for the night, no hot meal, nothing!
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. This was supposed to be a compassionate, caring and helpful man of God …and he had nothing to offer to me.
I went to other similar organizations during that time span and the answer was always the same… they would listen to my story of woe, they would offer to pray for me .. but none of them had anything to offer that would give me food or shelter.
I was thankful that once in awhile, somebody that I met on the street would take me to a restaurant and buy me a sandwich or a meal or something. The fast food joint where I had been filching sandwiches from their dumpster got wise to what was happening and poured household bleach, full strength, over all the sandwiches in their dumpster, rendering them totally unfit and unsafe to eat.
Well, here is the end of the story, friends and neighbors … since that time I have gotten to the point in life where I never have to ask anybody for anything anymore. I have all I need and then some now … I have been blessed beyond measure … I climbed out of that shit hole of poverty and desperate need …
But these days I pass by those cheerful little carol-singing elves with the tin buckets to collect cash in … I pass by them all … I wouldn’t piss on them if they were on fire …
Call me vindictive if you wish. Call me anything except late for dinner.
I am pretty certain, but I cannot be sure, that there must be other people out there who found themselves in much the same situation as I was in and I am wagering that they got the same answers to their pleas for help from some of these jerks.
I don’t know what goes with all the money that some of these outfits collect every year — I am sure that some of it goes into some kind of food assistance or shelter program for the indigent…but I was indigent once and could never seem to get a foot into their door of compassion for some reason still unknown to me.
All I know is that I am no longer that bum on the streets that I was way back then and I know also that none of them will ever get a dime from me.
What I do these days is take a needy person to a restaurant or a store and get them food or clothing if they need help.
I do all my charitable acts in person directly with the people I meet who are in need. Never a dime to a billion dollar corporation with a bunch of little patsies running around collecting dimes, dollars and doughnuts so that some stiff necked creep in a fancy office somewhere can live a life of luxury.