Helping and Hating the Homeless Essay

2602 Words Feb 7th, 2013 11 Pages
The word “homeless” is used to describe many different kinds of people with a variety of problems; the “homeless” includes veterans, the mentally ill, the physically disabled or chronically ill, the elderly on fixed incomes, men, women, and families that have lost their source of income, single parents, runaway children who’ve been abused, alcoholics and drug addicts, immigrants, and traditional tramps, hobos, and transients (Martin, 1999). In “Helping and Hating the Homeless”, Peter Martin claims that although these people all have different backgrounds, histories, and reasons for not having a “home”, they are categorized and stereotyped by society and all looked down upon for being “homeless”. He addresses his readers, those that pass by …show more content…
The effect size parameters point at a clear-cut negativity bias for both relevance types” (199). This is the only study that received these results and explains that the homeless were scene as asocial, aggressive, weak, and contemptible. Throughout “Helping and Hating the Homeless”, Martin also reflects how the homeless are viewed. He uses many adjectives with similar, if not identical, meanings to the ones used in the study. He explains how the homeless are viewed as anti-social because many are trying to avoid our world, how they are viewed as a threat because they are not similar to us, how many of them are hungry and don’t have places to sleep and therefore they are weak, and many look down upon them and think that the are getting what they deserve. This study elaborates on Martin’s ideas of how the homeless are viewed, and gives further evidence and reasoning to why these are the automatically active prejudice thoughts, or stereotypes, projected toward the homeless. In their study, Perspectives of Employed People Experiencing Homelessness of Self and Being Homeless: Challenging Socially Constructed Perceptions and Stereotypes, Michael Shier, Marion Jones, and John Graham introduce their study with this sentence, “Negative public perspectives and stereotypes of homelessness is a significant issue that needs to be addressed to help eliminate the stigma attached to people who are homeless and to the shelters