Christmas and Homelessness
Twas the night before Christmas, we will all be in our houses coddled up in our beds with sugar plums dancing in our heads, for most of us, this is tradition, a norm. The family comes over, the gifts are wrapped, the Christmas specials are watched; it truly is the most wonderful time of the year. We probably don’t give much thought to the people who don’t have these things.
Yes, there are people who outside of our whimsical bubble have to worry about insecurity and stress during the most glorious season.
Baxley from the Huffington post says that life will go on for the homeless much like it always has. Naturally, we assume that all are taken care of because we want to have a positive outlook on Christmas. We want to believe that broken families will come together and that peace and health will be restored to the sick. We want to believe that the homeless find homes for the holidays. A beautiful thought, but the truth is only the fortunate few participate in the luxury of having a place to stay. Others attempt to scrape up the few dollars they have to get a decent meal. Yes, while we eat a feast to feed an army the homeless are still sifting through garbage to get a meal. If they are lucky a restaurant might provide them with left overs.
On the other hand, during this time there are many charities in the work raising money and there are shelters providing can goods to feed the hungry. But one has to remember that these options are available to the ones who know of them or who are able to get to one of these locations. Sadly, in most cases, there are an abundant of options open to only women and children, not to single men. Those who are mentally ill and or abandoned veterans are the ones who suffer throughout this season. They are the forgotten few who still have to worry about an unpleasant night.
One of the many things that are associated with the season is rest. Most jobs give time off for the holidays and if a person hasn’t gotten a good night’s sleep all year around for at least a week they get to have that. The homeless do not. While they lay in their insecure spot they still worry about things such as robbers and lousy kids who don’t have anything better to do than to pick on them. So in better words, the time that is supposed to be set aside from every other day is just like any horrible day and night for them.
So let us, as a nation, remember what Christmas was originally about. It’s not about shopping, food, or Christmas specials. It’s about celebrating the greatest quality of humanity; love. The best way any person can show that in this season is showing someone without a home that they care. Whether it’s the giving of food, or simply noticing them and wishing them a Merry Christmas.