top of page

Homeless In A World Of Rejection And Apathy

In an interview that included talk of his success, Bob Marley – who is mistakenly attributed with the quote, “Some people are so poor, all they have is money.” – had the following exchange:

Interviewer: Are you a rich man? Marley: What do you mean, rich? Interviewer: You have a lot of possessions? Marley: A lot of money in the bank? Possessions make you rich? Marley: I don’t know that type of richness, my richness is life.

Richness in its truest form is about more than possessions, more than money. The same can be said about poverty. Money alone cannot create a solid foundation for a healthy life. One needs food, water, air and shelter, the most basic needs, combined with compassion, acceptance and friendship in order to live a rich life.

What happens to those who go without?

When you watch people from a distance as they interact, or don’t interact, with some of the most impoverished in our community, you might be astute enough to realize that homeless people are treated not like someone but something that is to be feared.

Stereotypes might be to blame but don’t forget that people are a product of their environment. When it comes to homelessness, an uncommon topic at the dinner table, it is uncommon to witness public displays of compassion and acceptance towards people who are impoverished and homeless.

Don’t think it goes unnoticed.

For his role in the film ‘Time Out Of Mind’, Richard Gere posed as homeless on the streets of New York, a city where, when he’s not acting, he is actively involved with organizations addressing poverty and homelessness. On his first-hand experience living on the street, Gere said in an interview that he could see people see and judge him from a distance. As they got closer they changed their trajectory to avoid contact. Some even crossed the street.