By Fatima Ahmed
If beggars could blog like we blog about the poverty situation in our country what would they say? “We keep knocking on their window and they pretend to ignore us. They pretend like we don’t exist. Are we not human and do we not deserve even their acknowledgement?”
It’s downright rude to ignore anyone. If one of us were ignored I am sure it would become an ego problem and no matter how close you were with the person-or not- it would end in a fall out. However, this thought occurred to me today as I was waiting in my car ignoring a beggar. She had a child in her arms and just as she saw me looking her way she approached our car and started to knock. She knocked and I ignored her. I am guilty. She was persistent and so was I. The more she knocked my window the more I turned my back towards her. I don’t know her situation or how needy she was for any amount of money I would have given her, but we both continued our respective behaviors. We were both persistent.
When she understood it was going nowhere she come from the other side and started to knock again to which she got a scolding from someone else and then went away. The debate about beggars has become old really. Many of them have been exposed as frauds repeatedly and when you see a beggar with arms and limbs intact you end up wondering “they can work for the money and they still choose to beg for it”. Many of them have lost an arm or limb and can’t work and to that we justify saying they have been made like that by mafia groups so they can beg and earn for them.
Anyways, the question remains. If beggars could blog, what would they say about us? Would they blame us for not taking care of them? For letting them fall into the wrong hands? Would they conduct their business online, beg us on Facebook? I remember someone telling me about a beggar who owned a house and a car and he chose to sit and beg all day. So when they blame us how would we react? Will we defend ourselves? Tell them we tried? Would we instead blame them back that they should’ve had faith and worked hard instead of resorting to begging or perhaps I think they would be bragging about their lavish lifestyles on Instagram calling us all fools for working hard for money when they made it big doing nothing? Maybe they own smartphones and brag but with a different identity. I don’t even know my brother in the next room how can i know a stranger.
We also defend ourselves saying we can hardly afford our own expenses so how can we help them? Isn’t it the state’s job to protect them and provide for them? True, it is but it is our combined responsibility as well. We may view these people as part of some crime syndicate and it may be true but isn’t this because these people lack the basic necessities like food, water, clothing and shelter. The circumstances in which they may be born into are a lot different from ours and the kind of implications it has on a person can break them. We’re protected and they’re not. Despite of how we view these people we cannot deny that they are needy and don’t beg out of choice but compulsion, which is why we should take it little easy on them as they are out there begging to fill their empty stomach while we are judging when with on a full belly. I stand guilty, do you too?