Why are beggars despised?

“Then the question arises, Why are beggars despised? –for they are despised, universally. I believe it is for the simple reason that they fail to earn a decent living. In practice nobody cares whether work is useful or useless, productive or parasitic; the sole thing demanded is that it shall be profitable. In all the modern talk about energy, efficiency, social service and the rest of it, what meaning is there except “Get money, get it legally, and get a lot of it”? Money has become the grand test of virtue. By this test beggars fail, and for this they are despised. If one could earn even ten pounds a week at begging, it would become a respectable profession immediately. A beggar, looked at realistically, is simply a business man, getting his living, like other business men, in the way that comes to hand. He has not, more than most modern people, sold his honour; he has merely made the mistake of choosing a trade at which it is impossible to grow rich.”

George OrwellDown and Out in Paris and London

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2 thoughts on “Why are beggars despised?”

  1. Mr. Orwell’s statement is very insightful. Reminds me of my need for the Lord. Only a crucified man can love a beggar. By nature we love whatever we deem valuable. As long as our life is being received from the world we will love the things that the world values. If our life is from God then we value what He values. Largely we need a heart revelation that is loud and alive to us that we are beggars by profession who received Love.

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