Homelessness. I see its effects everyday around Boulder: in weather-worn faces, flimsy cardboard signs, group powwows absent of possibility, and sitting; lots of lost purpose and the passing of time sitting.
I understand that a small segment of our society chooses to be "houseless" but what about the percentage not interested in having the sky as a permanent roof? The primary occupation of this demographic is survival and the average income is determined by minimum-wage jobs, federal and/or state programs, the generosity of passersby, or some combination of each.
Without 401Ks, alcohol is where money is often invested. People living on the streets would rather numb the moment than save their paychecks because a basic threshold of hope is the entrance fee to embrace the future; brain injuries, and mental illness also complicate solutions.
So what can you and I do? Dole out spare change? Support local food banks? Petition your local public servants to create a plan to end homelessness? Yes, yes, and yes: be as generous as you can with your voice, time, talents, and spare change.
Ultimately, no one who sleeps with a roof over their head can, or should, rest completely until everyone who desires the same option has it.