Norrie Hoyt:

All I can offer in response to Mohammad's essay is Robinson Jeffers' 1926 poem, "Shine, Perishing Republic."

This is America almost 100 years after the poem was published.

Shine, Perishing Republic

While this America settles in the mould of its vulgarity, heavily thickening
to empire,
And protest, only a bubble in the molten mass, pops and sighs out, and the
mass hardens,
I sadly smiling remember that the flower fades to make fruit, the fruit rots
to make earth.
Out of the mother; and through the spring exultances, ripeness and decadence;
and home to the mother.



Life as you know it can be changed so quickly.

My family was in an upper-middle class area; both my husband and I working, 2 kids, 2 cars, big house, a dog, a camper, 2 motorcycles, vacations, income over 120k combined. Then my husband was accused of a crime that he didn't commit. Now we live in a cramped apartment in a different state. He can't get a job because he has a court case pending (his job let him go because they didn't want to deal with any controversy). I have a job that pays 35k (which is half what I used to get paid), but it's a lot less once taxes and health insurance come out. We sold the motorcycles and the house. We don't know if my husband will be going to jail for a crime that he didn't commit. We shop for clothes at the Goodwill and food at Aldi. I HAVE to work overtime to make ends meet, but they won't allow me to work more than a couple of hours over per week. There is no extra to put into savings or 401k. Summer is almost here, but I can't afford summer camp for the kids, so I will be forced to leave them at home alone if my husband is not here.

Of course, we still have what is most important. We have our family. We have our health (although that does tend to suffer under the stress).




Bill L:

Thank you Mohammad for helping others. You are an inspiration!


David N:

As a landlord for 10 years, almost everyone of the people I had to evict for non payment of rent had nothing to do with losing a job or not making enough money. They almost had always been about making irresponsible decisions. Here is a good one. "I went to work to get my paycheck but they did not have one for me. I do not know why they did not pay me." Since he told me two weeks earlier that he would be out of state for a couple of weeks and since he is paid biweekly, the reason they did not have a paycheck for him is because he did not go to work. Go figure.



Thank you, Mohammad, for your humanity, selflessness in reaching out to others in a country that is far from home. Yours is a gentle spirit.



frank collins:

from the Koran, not really a book of peace and love for Jews and Christians :
4.89": They desire that you should disbelieve as they have disbelieved, so that you might be (all) alike; therefore take not from among them friends until they fly (their homes) in Allah's way; but if they turn back, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them, and take not from among them a friend or a helper.



In spirit:

Thanks for the lovely article Mohammad. It shows a goodness of heart and character.


Feet Firmly Planted on Earth:

Dear All,

If anything, we should learn from this article that when we see someone we simply do not know what background they come from, and how they came to be in the position that they are presently.

Yes, many homeless people don't do drugs, or are not mentally ill, or whatever else. The fact is that when there is tax payer money going to many other 'areas' it seems unjust that there are no programs to help the homeless get back on their feet.

All of you who provided your own personal stories, thank you if you shared the truth.

And whatever you've gone through in life, stop judging! You are not better than anyone because you are Muslim, or Christian, or Sikh, or whatever. Everyone makes the best decision that they can at a particular moment in time. It may have been the wrong one to make then, but maybe there was nothing else to be done. How would you know?

And I still find it amazing that anyone can hold such fundamentalists notions as Jacob, Frank Collins, and Victoria. Religion and beliefs have nothing to do with this. Leave it out. It only belittles anything good that you may have said (which was not much to begin with). It is people like you who incite comments like the one Mohammad received--“What is a Mohammad doing in a church?” . You are so inflexible about your righteousness, that people are just as inflexible towards you. You give the others a bad rep.

Thank you Mohammad for sharing your experience with us.



Good Thing we still have billions of dollars for a war in Iraq!


Robert James:

Twelve years ago I used to practice law. One night I was bashed in the street by 8 young thugs. I suffered terrible physical damage and brain damage. I could not speak properly and I had no short-term memory. A lot of people scorned me. This period lasted two years during which I thought I might end up on the streets or sleeping in my car. They were cruel times. Thanks for giving these people support.