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  • Every moment in life presents a choice.

    Everyone wants to play the victim card, but in reality the whole of our lives consist of the thoughts we think and choices we make. Our perspectives of the world are formed through our repetitious behaviors. Yes, the degree of issues both mental and physical vary from one spectrum to the other for all people, but there is a place for everyone in this world, it just has to be sought. I am the creator of my reality. Common sense that is not too common needs to trump autotomic thinking.

  • Been there done that.

    I left an abusive husband and lived in my car for 3 months with my kids. No women's shelters back then. Mostly bag ladies and drunks on the streets on L.A.. It sucked. I worked hard, got a place. Got a job, went to school, started a business, raised my kids, bought a house.

    If I can do that 90% of the people in the street can. Panhandling pays more than minimum wage. If you want to get them off the streets enforce the vagrancy laws. Open the poor house. Stop giving them money.

  • My daughter is homeless in Oakland, CA

    She chose this life. All of her homeless friends that she has introduced us to chose to be homeless. Because of her we have met a lot of homeless people, they have all made the same choice. We have offed her a bedroom in our home and she chooses to sleep on the streets.
    She is capable of having a job, she choses not to. She has gone tom training, and passed, for many jobs, she quits them after only a few months in.
    She tells us she likes being homeless the people are more real.
    She has never had any psychological problems or been sexually abused. The homeless life is her choice.
    It breaks my wife’s heart but she doesn’t not care.
    It is a choice.

  • Some choose to be on the street panhandling

    My city has good shelters, homeless medical care, jobs for $9 an hour for picking up trash just for them, and rehabilitation support. Yet after a night in the shelter and a hot meal, there back out on the streets begging (I can guess what they need money for) . I don't know why but they are supported by the ACLU as their right. Let what about the rights for normal people that have to be frightened to walk under a bridge or take a bus in trashed out bus stops? My wife and I witnesses a store employee getting stabbed when he tried to stop a homeless stealing a bottle of liquor. Now my wife is terrorized to walk alone. What about our rights ACLU??

  • They do have a choice

    I am an ex police officer and spent a lot of time dealing with those living on streets. I have witnessed public giving them coffee and food which they decline and ask for money. Average earnings begging in a day is £220- a good income!
    There are also loads of shelters but the homeless refuse to go in them. They choose the streets!

  • Bad Choices = Bad Options

    Some start out having true mental illness, but let’s exclude them from this conversation as that not what the question is really asking. Let’s say that’s 50% of homeless.

    The other 50% are “regular” and choosing homelessness through their actions. Their parents may not have prepared them well for dealing with the world. It could also be something like autism. My son has mild autism and he is very smart. He has a high IQ and got good grades in school. But he thought he was special and different than everyone else. So he insisted on doing things his own way. It was very important to him. We tried to help him to understand how it would negatively effect him, but he wouldn’t listen. He was bullied starting in late Elementary school and throughout middle school and high school. He got into a good college, but when he got out of college he couldn’t keep a job. Again, he was insistent on doing things the way he wanted. So his employers kept telling him to do it somewhere else (he kept getting fired). And that led to losing his apartment.

    I’m older and we live in different states, and financially I can’t afford to help him. So now he’s homeless and living on the streets. He hates it. Now he really wishes he had been more flexible.

  • Bad choices = Limited Choices

    Some start out having true mental illness, but let’s exclude them from this conversation as that not what the question is really asking. Let’s say that’s 50% of homeless.

    The other 50% are “regular” and choosing homelessness through their actions. Their parents may not have prepared them well for dealing with the world. It could also be something like autism. My son has mild autism and he is very smart. He has a high IQ and got good grades in school. But he thought he was special and different than everyone else. So he insisted on doing things his own way. It was very important to him. We tried to help him to understand how it would negatively effect him, but he wouldn’t listen. He was bullied starting in late Elementary school and throughout middle school and high school. He got into a good college, but when he got out of college he couldn’t keep a job. Again, he was insistent on doing things the way he wanted. So his employers kept telling him to do it somewhere else (he kept getting fired). And that led to losing his apartment.

    I’m older and we live in different states, and financially I can’t afford to help him. So now he’s homeless and living on the streets. He hates it. Now he really wishes he had been more flexible.

  • You don't choose to be homeless but you choose to stay homeless.

    I have talked to a lot of people who work with homeless people, and many of them say that if they don't want to be homeless anymore and they work hard, they will be able to leave the streets. But many of them choose not to do that. They say that living on the street and taking drugs is living a free life. They don't understand that being part of society doesn't only come with rights but also with responsibility. They don't choose to be homeless but they choose to do whatever they want, and that comes with a price. I have met several people who have been homeless and decided that this lifestyle was not for them and I admire them so much for the efforts they made. If they can do it, most people can do it too.

  • Homelessness is SOMETIMES a lifestyle choice

    I live in an RV.....Fulltime. I can not afford both an RV and a permanent residence. I am homeless. I have no permanent address. I take advantage of the services for which I qualify, right now insurance subsidies and VR services only. I work. I pay my bills, RV mortgage, insurance, etc. I volunteer twenty plus hours a week for a free place to park....So technically, I have two jobs. But I am homeless.

  • Many choose not homelessness itself, but to be free of the pressures and norms of work and monthly bills.

    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.

  • No, the homeless does not choose to be homeless

    40-55% of all homeless people claim they have mental health problems. With that, they do not have the mental capacity or stability to 'make the right choice' of going on the right path. Yes, they may say they want to be homeless, but truly no one wants to have nothing, living on the cold hard streets.

  • Underlying factors .

    92% of homeless women have experienced severe physical and/or sexual abuse in their lifetime. Sometimes being homeless is their only escape. 25-40% of homeless veterans would presumably prefer to re establish the lives they had before their military service, but don't obtain the resources to do so. Also,35-45% of homeless people suffer from a mental illness and also do not obtain the resources to own a house or shelter and go through the day to day life that is persumed as "normal". For few homelessness is a choice but majority of the time, it is in relation to underlying factors and the ones I listed are just a few.

  • The are human, they have mistakes

    Homeless people dont choose to be homeless,they are caused by traumatic events or addictions even mental illness, and cant get help. Most cant even get jobs beacuse their illness is to bad or the owners wont allow it. SOme people wont sell house or apartments to homeless people bcuz of their past,illness,or even race. So dont say oh they choose no they dont.

  • A "No" by Default

    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.

  • No they dont

    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.

  • Well, that's a dumb thing to choose.

    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.

  • No, there is no one who would choose to be homeless.

    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.

  • Who would choose that?

    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 of them choose it

    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

  • No, they do not.

    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.


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