Tag Archives: Culture

Judging beggars is not helping them

In today’s edition of the Guardian there is an article by Dave Hill in the Comment is Free section titled Don’t give money to beggars – help them instead.

In this article Hill argues that you shouldn’t give money to people begging on the street because it harms them more than it helps them as they will probably spend it on drugs and alcohol. As far as Hill is concerned this is such an obvious argument that everyone agrees. He writes “Outreach workers know it.[That money given to beggars will mostly be used for drugs] The police know it. They are the ones who have to deal with the consequences, handling the harder cases, directing them to rehab, hoping not to have to fish a corpse out of a hostel’s bath.”

As I am a former outreach worker Hill apparently thinks he can speak for me. He isn’t completely wrong, of course, when he writes that money people get from others may be spent on drugs and alcohol. He is, however, wrong about almost everything else and I’d like to take this opportunity to respond.

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The Criminologist’s Mixtape

To start of this blog off I am crossposting asomething I wrote a while ago.
At the height of my procrastination efforts, I have made a criminological mixtape. Enjoy!

  1. Traditional – Little Sadie/Cocain Blues


The first written version of ‘Little Sadie’ is dated 1922. In its long history the song has been recorded Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Woody Guthry, and many others.

2. Bob Dylan – The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll (1964)


Dylan wrote this song at the age of 22, after reading about the killing of Hattie Carroll in a newspaper. In 1963, on the same day that Martin Luther King Jr. held his ‘I have a dream’ speech, the white tobacco farmer William Zantzinger had been sentenced to six months in prison and a 500 $ fine for manslaughter after killing Carroll, a black barmaid, in a drunken rage. Dylan turned the case into a powerful metaphor for race and class in America that transcends time and space.

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