Living the life of the juggling mom means sometimes waiting…in the school pickup queue, at dance or tumbling practice, in doctors’ offices, the orthodontist, in hospital waiting rooms, at the drugstore waiting for prescriptions to be filled…and on and on and on. Being the practiced mom who juggles and often hurries up to wait for a length of time I am prepared with a book on the Kindle, some favorite news apps, Words with Friends and, of course, social media. Yes, sometimes I wait for what seems like a long time…sometimes too long.
Waiting as usual earlier this week, I distracted myself with social media because nothing distracts me from waiting and sometimes worrying more than I should than what friends and family post on Facebook because I love the kids’ updates, quizzes, cat videos and “Vaguebook” status updates. What I mostly saw Monday is what quickly became viral and was all over my news feed this news story of a pregnant beggar with a boy driving off in a Mercedes.
:::cue the Facebook angry mob with torches and pitchforks:::
Something about this story reminded me of another story from earlier this year…what was it?…Oh, yes! The woman who drove her Mercedes to pick up Food Stamps.
Legit or scam, we see a panhandler or someone paying for groceries with an EBT card or Food Stamps or WIC coupons we are definitely noticing what they have or don’t have and we are judging and then we post our judgements on Facebook because everyone needs to know the young mother with the iPhone has no right to be buying groceries with WIC, especially when she has a 2 liter bottle of soda and a box of cookies in that basket. God help her if she has acrylic nails or is wearing what appear to be Uggs. Oh, and hell no, if she is seen getting into a late model car. Of course we can judge and decide what poor people should or should not have because, why not? We’re good people. We’re good, hard working, God-fearing people with jobs.
Well it turns out that the pregnant lady in the San Diego area is very likely a scam and thank goodness ABC10news is on the case to expose the Benz Beggar. But for every fraud there are countless people out there whose need is very much legit. We might see the Mercedes or the manicure or the iPhone or any material possession that we decide is something a poor person should not have and decide that this is a scam. Perhaps it is a scam. Perhaps not. Perhaps there is more to their story than we care to even try to discover.
Oh, and this.
Yes, I saw this too on my Facebook timeline that afternoon.