A Nebraska man’s decision to join panhandlers holding signs on street corners with a sign of his own drew plenty of attention and, ultimately, the police.
Charles Logan has had enough of people begging for money on Omaha’s streets and took action to send the panhandlers a message, KMTV reported.
“If you need money, get a job and go to work! Get a job!” reads a sign held by the 66 year-old who stands alongside the beggars who request handouts with their own signs.
“I can’t make them get off the corner, but I can sure embarrass them with my sign,”Logan said. “It must be working, because they’re mad about it.”
Mad enough to provoke some altercations, including death threats and an incident last week that resulted in police getting involved.
Standing about 50 feet away from a few panhandlers on an Omaha intersection, Logan said he was approached by a man who began cursing, threatening and yelling a racial slur at him.
“I said ‘I don’t believe that you need to be out here, and I have a right to hold my sign just like you have a right to hold yours,’ ” Logan said.
The man responded by allegedly throwing a cup of liquid at Logan, reportedly ruining his shoes, pants and sign, according to KMTV. He later denied making threats once police arrived and told them that he spilled the drink accidentally when he tripped.
The man, who police noted had some misdemeanor warrants from the state of Colorado, was not cited by the Omaha police.
Logan called out the panhandlers who hold signs that include the words “veteran” or “homeless” in order to earn more donations.
“It’s just a front,” he said. “It’s just a game with them.”
But some of the panhandlers disagreed with Logan
“He has a sign that says, ‘get a job’, but he doesn’t know people’s struggles,” Charles Smith, one of the panhandlers told WILX TV.“We all go through our personal struggles. Whether it be financial, physical, mental, emotional, and he doesn’t understand that.”
Smith is a single father reportedly facing eviction from his apartment while waiting on a disability check.
“I’m a college graduate. I was raised by very, very respectable parents. I’m a decent person, you know?” Aaron Hansen, who recently got out of jail and is homeless, said, speaking of his struggles with drug addiction. “It’s just a temporary thing, till I get back on my feet.”
Logan believes the panhandlers can get food and shelter from organizations designed to provide these services. He intends to continue his one-man crusade to rid Omaha’s streets of those who are faking their circumstances.
“This is my job. To tell them to get a job,” the retired military veteran told WILX. “That is what American is built off of- people that work, not people that beg.”
It’s certainly a job that Logan has learned comes with some dangers, as his confrontation with the man who spilled the drink was not his only one. He allegedly was threatened by one panhandler with a knife and earlier this week, another panhandler sprayed him with mace.
But Logan appears to have some support as well, getting plenty of attention from passing motorists.
“They agree with it,” he told KMTV. “They blow their horns and they support it because they know it’s wrong and I know it’s wrong.”
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