This is just an opinion and I don't think there is a definitive answer here. I have talked with several homeless people at length, all men, and all have said essentially that while it is a hard and dangerous life, they are overwhelmed by life's pressures whenever they try to live up to our culture's expectations. For them, homelessness is the only viable lifestyle where they can feel somewhat at peace internally. Most I talked with would like a car or van and talk wistfully about that possibility. I think a no-strings home would be acceptable to a few. But there are always strings, even if only for upkeep. Maybe half the men I talked to had alcohol addictions. All seemed at times to view the world with a slightly altered reality (related to my own view of reality). Parallel worlds, the ability to communicate to people or devine entities telepathically, a friend who looks out for us at all times (i.E. Religion) were spoken of as fact by one man. But people who think that also have their own tv shows, so how should those convictions be parsed? Bottom line, I think many choose to opt out of this corporate machine where we must work, must spend, must remember to do x, y and z on a particular schedule, and homelessness is the only way to be no longer a part of it.
I believe the total population of the homeless can be broken down into sub-categories. Yes, some are mentally ill, and their situation warrants being handled differently. However, most homeless individuals are in their situation because of poor choices they have made over the years. You don't just end-up homeless overnight. It's a result of many poor choices over time, accompanied with the wrong attitude or beliefs about how the world works. Taking drugs and the refusal to WORK will only lead to a dead-end road. It's not fair that they can occupy our public lands and services - We, the tax payers - the people who can manage to wake up and be productive each day pay for the sidewalks, bridges, etc. It's our land, and we should be able to demand our government leaders to come up with a solution - away from homes and businesses. We used to have productive Poor Farms for these people to help get back on their feet. But now, our leaders say that would be cruel punishment to force them to work. It will only get worse if we don't implement what our good parents instilled in us - Tough Love.
I have 3 University Degrees, Teach English, and have 2 Books Published. Yes, I CHOOSE to be Homeless. The Landlords and the crap I have tolerated for the past 20 years have caused me to make this drastic decision. A millionaire "Father" who is a Control Freak and slashed my Trust Fund is yet another reason. This new life, of course, is dangerous but the Freedom Conquers ALL. I will never return to "normal living".
Crack...Meth....This is the reason my 35 year old son chooses to live in his car. In Palm Springs, CA. He has quite a few associates who rely on his car to sleep in. Perhaps that is how he is affording gas money; charging other homeless men money to sleep in his car. My son became HIV positive just this last Spring. His chosen lifestyle of drugs and homelessness could very well cause him to be very sick. Being an LVN, he knows this. I have always assumed that no one could ever choose to be homeless. My son's lifestyle choice has changed the way I think.
I have talked to several homeless people and the majority of them choose to be homeless. Some reasons include circumstances, mental illness or just a spirit of rebellion/independence.
People who say no here do not seem to know any homeless. Talk to one and you will see that most of them can not function in what we consider a normal healthy environment.
While not everybody who is homeless chose to be homeless, a lot of the people who are have decided not to make the necessary steps to get out of such a situation. I think a lot of them have decided to give up on life. I do feel bad though for those who become homeless due to being mentally ill.
Tangible evidence of a "choice" is limited to hearsay, therefore no. One of the more complicated functions of the frontal lobe is known as "decision making". Homeless life imparts symptoms of mental illness of varying degrees so this "choice" has to be reexamined before we can possibly answer "Yes". NO.
I live in a developing country where poverty is not abnormal.
Nobody chooses to be homeless.Some people are born homeless, to homeless parents. They lack proper identification documents and education and hence they can't get a job or lift themselves out of poverty.They are born street kids and are trapped in a cycle they cannot escape from.
Some homeless are mentally ill.Mental illness is not a choice though,no one chooses to be insane.
Some people are immigrants who came in search of a better life but find no opportunities and they have no money or means to go home because all their money is spent coming here and anyway life back home isn't much different.
Some homeless actually work and are sane but they don't earn enough to sustain themselves.It's hard to imagine but in many places of the world people can work and still fall through the cracks.It's a tough world out there for many.
Getting into such a situation doesn't take much effort or time. In my opinion, these things can happen to anyone whether they like it or not. I think it's stupid to blame them for wanting to be homeless- mainly because it doesn't make any sense and most of the time it's not their fault. Circumstances change. We need to help people like that rather than criticize or accuse them of fraud.
Being homeless is very difficult. People treat the homeless like scum, they are too hot or too cold. Very few have enough food. No one would want to live in such a state. Nomadic tribe are different, of course. But actual homelessness is a life of misery and uncertainty. The world is not a safe place.
We're excluding societal miscreants like crust punks, who should be imprisoned on principle, but the significant majority of the homeless do not choose the lifestyle. The argument that one should just get a job, like it's that easy, is not the answer. Surely these people try, and being unable to even secure housing makes that all the more difficult.
Not all homeless people choose to be homeless, so you can't really make a blanket statement that they all choose it. Granted, some do make the personal choice to live that lifestyle, but not all. I think it is more accurate to say that a lot of them wind up homeless because of a series of bad choices they made previously, but that's not the same
I often hear this question and, I think, most of the homeless do not choose to be homeless on purpose. Some do, of course, and actually enjoy the freedom of not having to worry about finances and societal strains and restraints. But most do not enjoy living in that sort of squalor.