Here in Chicago we have one of those "help the homeless" newspapers, "Streetwise." You can pick up a copy from any of the two or three merchants hawking them in a single block. The great thing about it is that the authorized merchants have to go through a program and have to be "clean" before they can get the I.D. card that sets them apart from ordinary hustlers of otherwise free newspapers like the Onion. And the Streetwise sellers have a chance to put their lives back on track.
I passed by one of our Randolph street regulars today. He comes to the task with the mindset of a person with a commitment to his job, in suit and tie. I noticed he was wearing a new suit and complimented him on it. "I've been blessed," he said. "I'm doing better. Going to the thrift store to get another suit soon. People appreciate it when you take your work seriously." He seemed to have had some dental work done, too. I offered him another little word of encouragement and continued on home.
It's so good to see a person prosper, even if in the eyes of the Wall Street Journal, he will never seem to measure up.