Should You Give Money to Homeless People?

I’m sure most of us have run into similar situations when in populated areas: someone on the street asks you for money, someone who maybe smells a little like booze or maybe other substances. Is it your business how they use your spare change? After all, they’ll make the decision that’s best for their future, right?

Well, no. If everyone always made the best decisions for themselves, I wouldn’t have procrastinated writing this email until the day of our meeting. People make the wrong decisions all the time. And in the case of our less fortunate companion, it’s quite possible his/her version of “best for me” is in fact detrimental. Yet this situation is not unique; plenty of people want things that are explicitly bad for them. So should you empty your pockets, when your money may not work quite as intended?