I Wonder…

By | Jan 22, 2013

I wonder what it would be like if every American lived in a home of his or her own. It doesn’t seem like an unfair, unrealistic dream.

I wonder if we’d notice that there were no more people camped out under freeway overpasses. No more tents propped up against the chain-link fences surrounding empty lots.

I wonder if we would miss the people who stand beside freeway off-ramps holding tattered cardboard signs that ask for money, food, or work. Or if we’d wonder what happened to all those run-down RVs with the windows blocked by newspaper.

I wonder what it would be like if I had to live on the streets. If I lost my home because I received a pink slip at work and couldn’t pay my rent.

I wonder where I could find a safe place to sleep at night in a scary, violent city. In the dumpster behind a Walmart? No wonder so many people on the streets head to safer places like the beach, parks, and suburban neighborhoods.

I wonder what it would be like if I had two young children with me while I searched for shelter. No wonder many homeless families huddle in their cars, often their last material possessions. It seems much safer than staying in a shelter with 200 strange adults or, God forbid, letting their kids sleep unsheltered on the city’s streets.

I wonder what it would be like if homelessness was ended.

I wonder what it would be like if every homeless shelter and program had to shut down, not because of lack of funding, but because there was no one left in need of help. If all the shelter beds were empty because no one needed them any longer.

I wonder what the homelessness advocates and service workers would do. Perhaps they would become teachers, or County social workers, or firefighters, or international aid workers.

I wonder if this country could ever imagine, I mean clearly picture, a nation without homelessness. Maybe if we closed our eyes, and saw empty streets and empty shelters, it could actually become a reality.

I wonder.


  1. Posted Feb 11, 2013 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    What about homelessness of choice? :)

  2. povertyinsights
    Posted Feb 11, 2013 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    <DIV dir=ltr align=left>approve</DIV> <DIV dir=ltr lang=en-us>

  3. Posted Apr 1, 2014 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    I help homeless people and everyone has a different story.

  4. Posted Aug 29, 2016 at 1:01 am | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing.

  5. Posted Sep 13, 2016 at 4:02 am | Permalink

    Great post, I like it very much. Thanks for sharing this valuable post with us.

  6. Posted Oct 18, 2016 at 2:07 am | Permalink

    This entire post absolutely ROCKS! Thank you for all the hard work you put into it. It really shows.

  7. Posted Oct 20, 2016 at 1:56 am | Permalink

    I really loved this article! It gave me some new insights I never really thought about before.

  8. Posted Oct 20, 2016 at 4:25 am | Permalink

    Is this a blog series? If not, it should be. I would love to read the next installment on this subject.

  9. Posted Oct 21, 2016 at 4:25 am | Permalink

    I'm lovin' it! I actually just read like three of your posts today. So that means you better keep writing more, because I am going through these like they're going out of style.

  10. Posted Oct 21, 2016 at 7:58 am | Permalink

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