Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Homelessness, mental illness and McDonald's

Last Friday my family and I were enjoying a wonderful evening in Culver City. We had just finished shopping at Best Buy and were ready to find somewhere to eat. Since there was a McDonald's half a block a way we decided to eat there. When we first entered the McDonalds, it was reasonably clean and was decorated to honor movies from the 1920's to the present.

As we were eating we were approached by a homeless man. He asked if he could have some fries. My girlfriend was going to give him some fries,
he said,
"I don't want them"
she said
"Well why do you ask for fries and not want them?"
he said,
"Can I have hot mustard with them?"
she gave him the mustard and the fries

He sat behind us, while we were still eating and he had then already finished his fries.

He got up approached the table and said something
sounding like "wanting number one and sleeping outside"

I didn't quite understand him, and so I thought he wanted to order a big mac meal, which was the number one.

So I said
"Listen, My family and I are trying to eat, I'm going to give you a dollar and you're going to have to leave us alone.
(I was still under the impression that he wanted to eat more)
However, he took the dollar stepped away for a moment came back and
"I'm going to do #2 now."
Now, I understood him, He was grossing us out while we were trying to eat.
I told him to leave us alone.
He left our table.
I talked to the manager and he said, that he had already called the police and they were on their way.
The homeless man was now going to other tables bothering them.
My family was way too grossed out to finish eating.
We were discussing how gross it was.
I was upset.
Everyone was upset.

After the ordeal, we all discussed what happened.

I opined that never in my life had gone into a restaurant and have been harrassed that way not even in East L.A.

Chris said that if that the homeless man wouldn't pull such a stunt in a poorer city because he would get beat up.

My fiance said that it was sad and gross, but that the man had mental problems.

I agreed with them both.

Something needs to be done about our population of homeless people and those with mental problems especially.

I don't think the government does enough to help people who have mental problems, and often enough those with mental problems become homeless.

Homelessness is everyone's problem.

Mental illnesses is everyone's problem.

We need to talk to our representatives/congress and get something done about it.

All the anger that I had and the grossness of what happened has gone away,

I now feel sad,
because there are millions of people like this man
who desperately need help and there is not enough resources available for help.
So if you have any suggestions ideas or anything let me know.
Everyone can do something about these issues.

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Blogger Pamela said...

My brother was homeless for a period of time. He was mentally ill, not being treated and had an undiagnosed brain tumor as well. He is now deceased. He was a genious, a brilliant musicialn and my only sibling. now he is gone. I miss him. The Alliance For the Mentally Ill,, is an amazing advocatcy organization (non-profit) that can answer a lot of your questions and concerns. Treatment works, unfortunately, many cannot get treatment because of lack of access to helathcare and then there is a stigma with being CRAZY, LOONIE,CUCKOO and other names and gestures used to refer to something that afflicts one in ten of the American population at some time in their lives to some degree.

6:35 PM  

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