I have pastored in large cities, where they come in looking for food/rent money/food money/gas money/utilities money/diapers/baby food.
Over and over and over again, it gets spent on booze and cigarettes.
We figured out a voucher program with one store...they could only get what we allowed. They would then get the change, turn around and come back in for...yes, you guessed it, booze and cigarettes.
I will buy them food and hand it to them, but I will never give money.
Cheatum, it sounds like you need to change your ideas of "personal space". I lived in ICT for several years, working EMS. NO ONE has any reason to be closer than an extended arm, if they are, make space. Pretend you're feeling for your keys, wallet, whatever, but step away from any grouping of people, as much as possible. If you're in line, do your best to stay partially bladed. If someone asks for change/light/etc, a monosyllabic "No. Sorry." is more than adequate.
From the sound of it, you got the "mugging light"- the guy wanted to see how close he could get and what he could get from you. He passed with flying colors.
When I see these types coming up the sidewalk or hanging around a store, I always put my hand in my pocket and wrap it around my Ka-bar. When they hit me up it's always a no while I keep walking. These situations are great practice for your peripheral vision. 99% of the time they deal with it because I don't look like food. I've had the rare occasions when they become a little persistant and then I give them a louder no and that's always worked. I've yet to have to give anyone a taste of the Ka-bar.
I'm afraid I would have said something like, "yeah, I have 75 cents. I also have a job. You should try it sometime.", and walk away.
I agree with most of the replies and would answer "NO". You opened the door to his hustle by giving him 75 cents and he just asked for more money.
The only time I have given someone money was when I found a dollar on the floor at the grocery store. When I was walking out, a teenager asked me for a dollar so he could ride the bus home. The dollar I had found was in my coat pocket, so gave it to him without breaking stride and kept walking. Maybe he used the money for the bus, maybe not. Since I received my CPL, my answer is a firm NO and keep walking.
I do this because I remember a story told by the instructor of my CPL class about a time years before when he had been robbed at knifepoint. The guy who robbed him got his attention by asking for a dollar......
A member on another forum posted this list last year. As you can see, all so these incidents happened within a two-month period. The point is that asking for the time/money/directions, etc. is a common ruse that criminals use to get you to allow them into your space and/or drop your guard.
there's no need (at least initially) to be a jerk or insult the person, just say "no" and if they persist, ratchet up your response accordingly.
April 4th (this one didn't even bother with the interview phase):
Robbery try/arrest // A woman, 18, was walking in the 800 block of Liberty Road about 10:30 p.m. Sunday when a man threw a jacket over her head, knocked her to the ground and was attempting to rob her when he was tackled by witnesses and held for police. Charged with assault and attempted robbery was Fredi Garcia, 31, of no fixed address.
Robbery // A male employee of the Sunoco station in the 5900 block of Johnnycake Road was emptying trash about 7 a.m. Saturday when a man asked him for a cigarette. Before the employee could reply, the other man struck him with an unknown weapon and forced him into the building. There, the employee and the intruder became involved in a struggle behind the counter, during which the employee was robbed of his cell phone, valued at $225. There was no arrest.
Robbery // A man, 39, was walking in the 800 block of Beaumont Ave. about 7:45 p.m. Thursday when he was stopped by a teenage male who asked him for the time. When the victim looked at his watch, the teen pulled out a semiautomatic handgun and robbed the victim of a cell phone and his wallet containing $1.
Robbery // A woman, 44, was walking along Dunran Road near Dunmore Road about 5 p.m. Wednesday when a teenage girl stole her purse after asking for directions.
Theft // A man was standing at Read and Cathedral streets Saturday afternoon and talking on his cell phone when another man asked to use it. When the victim refused, the other man grabbed the cell phone and fled. The victim told police he followed the thief to a house in the 1500 block of Madison St., but could not find him inside.
Robbery // A 31-year-old woman was about to enter her home in the 2700 block of Norland Ave. about 7 p.m. Saturday when she was stopped by a man who asked her for money. Before the woman could reply, the man stole her purse containing a small sum of money and fled.
I have given change before if I don't feel threathen by them. It also depended where it was too. If someone approches me in any kind of threathning manner, they get the NO! I never pull out my wallet. I'll never forget the time I pulled up to an off ramp and there was a panhandler there with his "need help and food" sign. I offered him my red beans I had just bought at Popeyes at the last exit. He had the nerve to ask "Do you have money instead?" I gave him a look like tuff crap and rolled up the window. He started yelling, I'll take it!, I'll take! so I was nice and gave it to him, the red beans that is.
Armed or not I say "back off" its a clear warning that no further communication is needed/desired. This is mainly because I dont want anyone close to me for any reason. If the person followed you into the store make the store understand you do not appreciate their allowing this to occur on thier property.
I get grief from some people when I run these folks off the property at the store I manage. I think its sad when a customer tells me I am being a jerk. I tell them "Well you can donate your money if you like to that guy, he will be down at that other store for the rest of the day, but I wont have my other customers feeling threatened or intimidated, possibly hurt because they dont want to give him any money." Sadly it is because people do give them money that they stay in a location and harrass others, If I am a jerk for running them off I can live with that.
I never give cash to someone i don't know. I am polite and respectful to people who ask, yet they get nothing but a smile and "no thank you"
If you really want to help so you feel warm and fuzzy inside, donate to a real charity (and get tax receipt), or better yet, get your butt out there on the weekends and volunteer. I personally much prefer to work with children (they are easier to deal with and generally have brighter futures then their parents).
I am sure there is a rare occasion when it would be appropriate, just never has come up that way...
I'm a magnet for this type. I've since moved to a small town and it's pretty much stopped, but I never gave them anything.
I love the stories you get too..."My car's out of gas", "I need bus fare"...It's amazing how many of them still need gas money or bus fare the next day. My mom got hit up by a woman with a baby..."Arby's has a 5 for 5$ special and we're real hungry". My mom offered her the $2 in her pocket and the woman looked insulted, "It's $5 ma'am, not $2." Beggars/Choosers?
Worst I've seen was a video of this HUGE guy who would walk up to people just saying, "Hey, gimme five dolla!" A lot of people would see this HUGE guy blocking their way and hand him money. He never actually threatened anyone, but he didn't exactly make it sound like a request either.
A panhandler was "working" his corner in Portland, OR, behind his "homeless and hungry, please help" cardboard sign. A woman driving by stopped to offer him a job. Her husband was a contractor who needed some day labor and paid $10.00 per hour.
He turned down the job offer and told the woman he made $30.00 per hour, just by hustling his corner with his sign, so why would he want to work?
I don't give hustlers and panhandlers anything. After 5 years working in a homeless shelter, I've seen all the scams and heard all the stories.
I never give to anybody standing with their hand out, but I have given money to somebody who impresses me by playing some kinda instrument (ie)the drums on a upside down 5 gallon buckets, pots or pans. It show some kind of intrest in working. I have seen a diffrent women in diffrent locations with the same child. Kid has a weird birthmark on the forehead. I have be approached with I ran out of gas story and i need money for cab fare. I reply Oh, I happen to have a gas can in the trunk with 5 gallons of gas where is your car? or I ask which way are you headed I can drop you off. Both times response was Never Mind!!! People are always creative. Here in NYC we used to have squeege men that would run up you your clean windshield and spray dirty water and then squeege the water off for change. Mayor G ran those guys out of town :)
Just recently I noted a guy that was sitting at the off ramp of an Interstate. He had his grungy bag, sign and so forth. Anyone just traveling though and exiting would think he is a traveler/hitchhiker passing through as well. Me being a local, passed by there a lot and I could see he was out there everyday in the same spot.(providing it was good weather). He wasn't going anywhere, he had set up a little cottage-industry of begging by the side of the road.
I haven't noticed him there in quite a while. Presumably the local leo's got tired of hearing his excuses and shipped him off to ya'lls town. :rolleyes: