For every culture, there exists one or more sub-cultures. Within a culture and its’ existing sub-cultures there will inevitably be differences, and as such, they cannot and should not all be put under one label. The homeless have remained invisible to a large majority of individuals because of the stereotypes associated with them. A recent social experiment showed the extent to which the homeless remain invisible; even husbands, wives, sons, daughters, et al. did not recognize their own family members who were pretending to be homeless on the street. I have spent time with people who happen to be homeless; good people with good hearts and honest intentions, who for one reason or another found themselves in a position they never thought they would.
For many Americans, they are only two paychecks away from homelessness themselves.
I know very well that had it not been for my family, I would have been homeless a number of times. Most unfortunately, not everyone has a family like mine, or a family at all for that matter. I believe that the first and most crucial step towards ending homelessness begins with breaking down stereotypes; telling their stories, telling the truth. Let’s start with this first critical step and go from there.