I have been on vacation this week, so I wasn't at work when the shooting occurred Monday afternoon. But had I been at work, I would have been there at the time. It happened where I go on my afternoon walk each day, only about an hour after I usually go.
I saw the victim's picture on the news and realized that I've seen him hanging out around my building. Always begging for money, as so many of the others down there do. And as always, I shook my head and ignored him whenever he asked for change. I feel strange having known of this man, though I didn't know him. I struggle with conflicting feelings like "why didn't I give him money" and "if I'd given him money, he'd only have drunk it away..."
I feel bad that this happened to him, but I feel like it was ultimately his choice to let alcohol rule over his life. Sure alcoholism can be considered a disease, but it's sort of a disease with an asterisk after the word. A disease in which it can sort of be conquered, if one wants to. And this isn't the reason that all people are homeless, of course.
I suppose all of this blathering is to say that I can't fix the problems that make homeless people homeless in this world, and that I shouldn't necessarily feel guilty for having passed this man by countless times, paying little to no attention to him, because there was nothing I could really do to help him. It doesn't make me feel any less bad, however...I don't really know how to resolve this...