Please Give Him A Chance

In Please Give Him A Chance, Josie talks about coming across a man begging for money in the street and the emotional effect it had on him for many reasons.

Josie:  Today, I passed a man on the ground looking up at me asking for money…I said “sorry” and kept walking…I was just coming out of a store with grocery bags, it was hot and I had shit to do at home but I didn’t get far before I turned back.

I knew I had cash in my wallet to give him but that wasn’t even the point.  What bothered me was that he must have been around my age and beneath the filth, the sadness and the addiction beating through his face…there was a goodness, an innocence.

I couldn’t help but think about how I’ve struggled and suffered in my own life and how much shame I felt that I couldn’t even give this man a dime…

Shame on me…

So, I went back to him with money in hand and I approached him.  When he looked up at me he smiled without saying a word and his eyes went bright…I was able to see the brightness in him…and for a second we were together…”Have a good day, Buddy.”

That was all I could think to say but I wanted to say so much more…I wanted to give so much more…I wanted to take his problems with me and bury them somewhere he could never find them again, this way he could start fresh and have another shot at living life without remembering any of the sick memories he had growing up…without the beatings he took from his father, without the abuse he saw his mother receive, like that time her nose was broken by his father and he stood there helpless to defend her, without the gang fights and break ins and robberies and guns and damn, so many fights…welfare lines in Brooklyn and being told to use the “food stamps” at nine years old at the supermarket and not understanding why everyone was staring at him but feeling what it meant regardless, the disappearances of much loved relatives from bullets and disease and yet, he kept on ticking only to land on the ground crying out for money.

Aw man…I hope he finds his voice, rises above and finds true happiness cause he needs it…please, please give him a chance…

Joseph Arnone

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