To give or not to give

While on our way to a store, or a restaurant - I can't remember which - when we first moved here to Chicago, we came to a large intersection, where two young men, both a little rough around the edges, were dressed in reflective vests and carrying plastic buckets.

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They were clearly asking for donations of some sort. However, neither their vests or buckets had any indication of just what they were collecting for.

As we rolled closer to the stoplight, we noticed two cop cars making their way - lights off - to the gentlemen. I came to the assumption that either this was an investigation to see what they were asking money for, or they're known to be scammers and were about to be shut down.

Since then, I've frequented that intersection, and have yet to see the two gentlemen - until this evening.

I prayed for a green light, but my prayer was not answered.

I was car #2 in line, and watched one man approach the car in front of me. I rolled down my window to see if I could hear him.

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"Hi, good evening, having a good day today", he asked politely. I couldn't hear the motorist respond, but I think they asked what the collection was supporting. Thankfully, the collector had a strong, loud, gruff voice.

"Well, ya know, it's rough times, rough times this year, for a lot of people. Christmas...and holidays, many people don't got nothin', and organizations only seem to give to a certain kind of people, ya know? So, my buddy over 'dere and I, we collectin' for those in need. We started a organization, People for People, and we hopin' to get support from the community for..."

The motorist responded. I couldn't hear what they said, but they rolled their window up right after.

The collector nodded and said, "Alright, have a good day. God bless."

I was next.

To be continued...