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1 Vicious Babushka  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 9:17:19am
“Those shoes are hidden,” Hillman, an Army vet, told the Times. “They are worth a lot of money. I could lose my life.”

$100 shoes are not worth more than $100, unless the winning Powerball ticket is hidden inside.

He probably gave away the boots for an 8 ball.

2 Dark_Falcon  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 9:23:46am

re: #1 Vicious Babushka

$100 shoes are not worth more than $100, unless the winning Powerball ticket is hidden inside.

He probably gave away the boots for an 8 ball.

People have been attack on the street over less than a $100 dollar pair of boots, so his story has some plausibility. But you're right that its more likely BS.

3 Alexzander  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 10:10:02am

He may just take them off when he is panhandling. Going to make way more money that way. Used to know someone who did exactly that.

4 wrenchwench  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 10:15:10am

The Page needs a link, and you shouldn't use the whole article.

The homeless man is entitled to do whatever he wishes with a gift. I'm sure he's correct that it could be dangerous to wear the boots. Perhaps a pair of worn-looking sneakers would be more appropriate if the point is to protect his feet. He needs a lot more help than that if he wants to get off the street and into a residence, but I don't see him saying that. And I don't see anyone asking him that.

Facts about Veteran Homelessness

On a single night in January 2011, 67,495 homeless Veterans spent the night on the streets of America.
An estimated 144,842 Veterans spent at least one night in an emergency shelter or transitional housing program in one recent year.
Many other Veterans are considered at risk of homelessness because of poverty, lack of support from family and friends, substance use or mental health issues, and precarious living conditions.
VA is the only federal agency that provides substantial hands-on assistance directly to Veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
Each year, VA’s specialized homelessness programs provide health care to almost 150,000 homeless Veterans and other services to more than 112,000 Veterans.
More than 40,000 homeless Veterans receive compensation or pension benefits each month.
Although they are limited to Veterans and their dependents, VA's major homeless programs constitute the largest integrated network of homeless assistance programs in the country.

5 Aligarr  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 11:58:46am

One can be cynical about this , but the truth is , when you're homeless on the street in NYC , you can loose your life for alot less than that pair of boots . Nonethless it will not diminish an act of kindness ,which in reality was an act of love with no strings attached , not done for recognition or approval , although someone took a picture , not done for any recompense ,this man had nothing ,nor was it done to see any result other than keeping a man's feet warm .The reason the man gave for hiding those boots bespeaks a wretched world in darkness , where such an act by this Officer will shine like a bright star , it will not fade away or ever be forgotten by atleast one man . Long Live Love .

6 Flavia  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 12:07:50pm

This is another reason I hand out packages of food. Someone could get killed for money.

7 Locker  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 3:26:11pm

I'm sure bare feet bring more pan handling money than brand new $100 boots. It's not that hard to find something to put on your feet and I'm sure he could get a pair of combat boots for less than 20 dollars at the surplus store. The fact that he doesn't seems to be directly related to marketing and return.

8 goddamnedfrank  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 4:57:39pm

Hillman's got a point. The man has as much right to control his likeness as anybody, and a lot of the Youtube videos are running ads that provide money to both YT and uploaders. People are making money off him. He never signed a modeling waiver to be filmed and eventually used as a marketing spectacle for the NYPD or to sell ads online. He is entitled to the same equal protection civil laws as any celebrity who's image is used commercially without their permission.

9 What, me worry?  Mon, Dec 3, 2012 5:11:36pm

A very similar thing happened to me. A few years back, I noticed a youngish (late 20s, early 30s) homeless man that used to pull things out of the trash and try to sell them. He'd lay out a blanket with all kinds of junk, real junk, broken clock, ripped up book, wire hangers etc. My husband was coming out of the service and he'd get these expensive sneakers at the PX for about $10. He brought home an extra pair so I decided to take it to this man. Winter was coming and I noticed he only had a pair of old, tore up sandals.

So I walked up to the blanket and laid down the shoes. I said, "Would you like these?" He looked at me. Looked at the shoes. Held them up to his feet - they looked like a perfect fit. And then shockingly, rather violently, he started screeching at me. "Who do you think I am? You think I want charity? See these sandals?" He stuck out his feet to show me. "THESE COST $200!" I got scared and thought he was going to attack me so I picked up the shoes and started to leave. A delivery man standing near shouted out to me, "That's what you get for being nice, young lady!"

I thought it was a nasty remark. He couldn't help himself, I thought. I tried to be nice and I humiliated him. I felt awful.

There was a trash can near where he was sitting so I placed the shoes next to it and went on to finish my lunch. When I walked by it again, about an hour later, the shoes were gone. I hope he took them anyway, even just to sell.

Similar yes? He might have felt humiliated by the experience. Or that the cop was getting recognition at his expense. Or, and probably more to the point, he has psychology issues, which makes sense to me especially since he has two grown kids who seem sincerely interested in his well-being, but probably are just unable to help him, because he can't help himself.

I just hope it doesn't jade the cop, or anyone in that situation, on being helpful to the less fortunate.

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