The (Rule for) Beggars
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Beggars are very common in our lives, especially in Indonesia. I don’t know what it is like in other countries, maybe it will be the same in other developing countries. Let's look at Depok, as one of the cities in West Java as it is actually very close to Jakarta.
You can find beggars everywhere in the city I live. They beg in the streets, in front of the shops, and come house-to-house to get money. Beggars come in many forms of people. She or he can be a child, teenager, or even elder. Sometimes some of them may bring a baby, that actually is not always theirs—they get the baby by renting!—to make them look more pathetic. The public was shocked several months ago because the news said there were are millionaire beggars. No, you don’t read it wrong. They are beggars, but they are also millionaires. They get about 25 million rupiahs in 15 days, just by begging! I don’t really know how it works, and at first I don’t think that they will gain a huge amount of money.
However, there is a rule in Depok and Jakarta that prohibits people to give money to beggars. They will be punished by paying fine for giving them money. The government says that—despite the case of the millionaire beggars—giving them money will make the unemployed people become lazy to seek for jobs or to create a job. Somehow it creates a loss for the country. This rule causes so many pros and cons. The pro side says that it is a good thing because it will push their creativity and spirit to create jobs so it will also decrease unemployment, and it will teach people not to be lazy and try every positive thing to fight for their lives. Another point is if they don’t get enough money in big cities, the beggars—which actually come from a village and/or small city—go back to their city. This will decrease the amount of inhabitants in big cities.
On the other hand, it says that this rule will not affect the existence of beggars because somehow beggars are part of a social system. This rule will only cause another problem. The problem that they propose is by making this rule, it will be possible for them to finally just commit crime to fulfill their needs. This is something that the other side doesn’t count. The government itself doesn’t take good care or take action to help beggars. Beggars cannot help themselves and they need the government to help.
How does your country deal with this phenomenon?