Wed. May 22nd, 2024

Actual homeless shelter in gym.

Allow me to introduce you all to a little hunk of reality that some people do not realize exists simply because they have never been there.

How the working homeless exist . . .

The lowest gym membership provides a locker for the most valuables, a place to network, access to a shower, a restroom, sometimes a place to do laundry, a place to charge one’s cellphone and fairly secure and safe shelter.

A store front post office with a street address provides the illusion of a lived-in apartment.

Without hygiene, a phone and address . . . Someone can’t even become the working poor. Someone can’t get most government services. Someone can’t get a Driver’s License. Someone doesn’t have access to even having access.

I understand that you and I may perceive a gym membership as a luxury, but the gym membership maybe the lowest rung in our society’s post-Reagan slide into economic feudalism. A “panhandler with a gym membership at the gym” maybe another person desperately clinging to the appearance of being employable or someone trying to make the gap to reenter society.

During GWB43’s Administration, it began to be “uniquely American” for a person to work two to four jobs and not have enough money to pay for available shelter. Not everyone has access to enough of those part-time or full-time jobs without sufficient pay and benefits to exist without “collecting alms from their fellow men.” Additionally, what was commonplace in some Middle Eastern countries is a shop keeper to close and seek alms to rent their space for the next day’s work. There are entire States in America that lacks even that much societal support.

I cannot speak for the individual or individuals you have seem in your day-to-day travels. I can only suggest that more to the story may exist than you are aware of. We often forget to understand other people’s humanity and ingenuity because we have never been as close to the edges of the very society we live in daily.


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