Our Readers' Opinions
May 9, 2017
Show some compassion for the poorer people

Editor: I’m a young man and I’m facing some difficulties in life — unemployment, frustration, poverty and health issues are some of my challenges. Sometimes I feel like giving up; at one time I even considered suicide; that’s how bad it got. It’s extremely frustrating when I sit and think about life and its obstacles. My parents tried their best, but things were so bad, it caused my parents to fight so often. I often believe that is one the reasons why life is so difficult for me. My stepfather abused my mother and my sisters sell themselves short to assist mommy. Writing this letter is extremely painful, but I need an avenue to express my frustration.

While you are reading this letter, think about poor people who are finding it difficult to make ends meet, finding a job in today’s age is very hard. I asked a BIG man in society for some sort of assistance and this is what he said to me: “Nothing from nothing leaves nothing.”

Use your imagination and figure out what he wants in return. With all these challenges I’m facing in life, I often feel to give up, but there’s an inner voice and strength that tells me not to give up.

I often hear some Vincentians say horrible things about persons who live on the street; they are called vagrants, stupid, vagabonds, worthless, and crazy, but we don’t know the circumstances that cause these persons to live on the streets.

There are combinations of things that can drive persons to be discouraged: poor parenting, lack of opportunities, bad company and a society that expects the best. When one tries to accomplish a goal in life and fails, that person automatically gets pushed in the path of destruction by today’s society. It’s a shame how we find all sort of ways to discourage persons who require help; everyone in today’s society is all for themselves, to hell with you who are struggling, once my family is alright.

But one thing I can tell you is that this problem poor people are facing is also society’s problem. Persons who are fortunate may believe that this problem won’t affect them, but it affects all Vincentians one way or the other.

This society is failing us; it doesn’t take a blind man to see; what happened to “Live and let your brother live?” I’m truly hoping readers of this letter take some time and speak to underprivileged persons and you might understand what I’m going through.

I’m being called all sorts of names. My thoughts are going wild; persons around whom I spend time are not paying attention to what is occurring around them; all you hear is negativity.

It’s all about condemnation. It appears no one desires to hear our story; believe me, we have a story to tell. There are many persons who’ve had or have some sort of problem. Should we write off these persons or should we give them the support which is required to make them better? Let’s stop, think and find ways to help persons who need assistance. Condemnation, name calling and reminding them about the mistakes they made in the past doesn’t help at all; it only opens stale wounds. It is my desire that after reading this letter Vincentians would have a better understanding of poor people’s situation; one may not know the circumstances leading to our misfortune. Please, instead of passing judgement, show some compassion, because you never know what life has in store for you.

Alfred Bernard