Other essays on this theme

Essay: "Compassion"

by James Evans
Where Our Future Lies

Humanity is shuffling about the cities of the world, pushing along the thousands of miles of sidewalks, staring straight ahead as if they are the only remaining zombie souls in the galaxy of this world, and never seeing the person that keeps stride along with them.

But what's even sadder than that is the unseeing eye never wanting to see the homeless woman pushing the shopping cart; for fear that they may see their mother, sister, grandmother or their dear and beloved aunt. The same is true for the man standing close to the gas station with a tin can, rattling the few coins in his possession, who you pass every morning on your way to work. But you must ask yourself; do these poor and broken-down souls really deserve your compassion? The way I see it, some do and some don't. But then again, you must look at it, and see that this is America, the land of opportunities. The only reason they sit where they do now is because this is their wish or they are too beaten down to care and raise themselves up from the gutter of their lives.

But you ask, how can I be so crude and uncaring? Because, I've lived the life of a homeless man, for a year and a half and, like a lot of people, I had a sad story to go with my homelessness. But unlike most, my life was just beginning.

At a month past my seventeenth birthday, my father went to prison for child molestation and incest. For supporting my little sister, who the rest of the family decided to disown through this horrifying experience, my family did not really want to have anything to do with me. And at this point of my life, I had only been living with my father for the past year and a half after being separated for thirteen years. I still had another five years of trials and mistrials of life's shortcomings, to teach me how to be a better man and provide for my wife, and future children. But still, I've asked not for the pity of some fool, nor their compassion or handouts.

Each and every person was given the power to choose the paths that they take and know the destiny of this path. Now children are in no way able to make such decisions, and so must rely on the wisdom of their parents. And like so many times over, there are many parents that have no guidance to give. For they know not their own further journeys, which they must choose rightfully. This is where compassion should lie, where our future lies.