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Why are the homeless homeless a satire

Jason Garoutte

December 3, 1996

English / Mr. Lunt

Why Are the Homeless Homeless?

There are many homeless people out on the streets of the large cities in

this great nation. When unemployment still hasn't gotten near zero and new

jobs are being created every day, people are starting to ask why there are

still homeless people in the alleys and on the sidewalks of this country.

This seems to be an ever haunting problem even though it would be so easy for

homeless people to just get a job. Let's look at the general requirements for

applying for and keeping a job. All you have to do is have nice clothes to

make a decent impression, a home address and some way to be reached in tight

situations, and a way of getting to work in the morning or night--whichever

the case may be. That's it. And I, for one, have reached a solution to this

widespread laziness.

First of all, most homeless people spend their days hunting through trash

cans and dumpsters for a piece of sustenance or at least something of value.

If they're not doing that, they're begging for spare change on street

corners. Eventually, one would think that they should be able to afford a

couple of respectable suits or other outfits to wear while applying and even

working for this job of theirs. All they have to do is poke around a little

longer or beg a little more, and that job would be theirs to enjoy. Keeping

these articles of clothing clean would be difficult, but manageable. If you

can't afford a coin operated laundromat (I'm sure there'd be plenty of left

over change from begging), just find some large, clean puddle of water in the

street to wash things in. As for cleanliness, I'm sure people throw away left

over deodorant or antiperspirant, soap, and other such toiletries to where you

can care of the bathing problem. You don't need to clean your hair, in fact,

doing so would rid yourself of the natural oils that build up over time and

actually hold your hair style in place.

Second, with all the left over money and such, they could go to one of

those Mailbox Etcetera stores and buy themselves a mailing address. That just

means they'll have to cope with eating only what they find in the garbage, and

not spending any of that extra cash on that frivolous fast food, or that

healthy vegetable stuff. Suppose they absolutely need a phone number also.

What's stopping any of these people from sleeping close to a pay phone? Just

record the number on the back of your hand (unless you have some nice paper

on you) before you head out to the job interview. And if you really want to

impress the boss, give him the number of the pay phone nearest your favorite

begging corner or alley, just in case they can't get a hold of you at the

first number. None would be the wiser.

As for the commuting, all one would have to do is make sure the pay phone

isn't too far from business. Better yet, sleep in front of the business, near

a pay phone, so you can also respond to any requests promptly and efficiently.

It would also give you much more time to sleep while waiting for that first

paycheck. Now that you must take care of the job and the finding food and

drink in the same twenty-four hour time period, you need all the sleep you can

get. Having to commute through miles of busy sidewalk would make you wish you

hadn't opted for a home away from work. All this being on-time and showing up

so early would be sure impress the boss, especially if he already wasn't

impressed with your feat of scrounging up the resources to hold this special


Now if all this doesn't impress your supervisor, I don't know what will.

I know I'd be impressed after learning the amount of time this homeless person

took just to get a reasonable outfit to show up to work with, the hours of

begging just to get bus fare to another part of the city, and the humility

endured to actually work up the nerve to ask someone fortunate enough to have

some spare change in their pocket if they can spare some so that person can

get a bite too eat. By now I would hope that any thought that I've been

serious about any if these aforementioned ideas has vanished: this is a

satire. I'm not sticking up for every single homeless person on the face of

the planet, for I know there are quite a few willing to spend any available

penny to get that next crack rock to smoke or that last fifth of whiskey to

drink. The thing is, there are a lot of people and even families willing to

work for less than minimum wage if someone were to just give them a chance.

But most of us look away in shame and ignore the person offering to wash our

windshield for any spare change we may have. I think scholarship programs

need to be started to help these people. Not a lottery where any crack fiend

off the street can get the opportunity to work, but actual screening and

testing to try to see just who is willing to take that extra step out of the

pit. This is a problem that cannot be ignored any longer.

Source: Essay UK -

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