Readers Weigh in on Panhandling Issue in Tamarac

Panhandler-TamaracBy: Sharon Aron Baron

Back in July of 2015, the City of Tamarac enacted a panhandling ordinance on the most dangerous intersections.  It was enforced for awhile, however, the same people are back walking in and out of traffic. Readers on our Facebook page expressed their opinion on our recent story on the situation.  

Sandra: “I would love for everyone sick of this to be poor and/or homeless for a year. I’ll bet you love God or Jesus (in theory) but clearly when it comes to practice some of his teachings, like piety or compassion, it’s a big FAIL.”  

Georgianne: “It’s not compassion to give money to a man who has made a habit of this. He’s been doing this for years as previously stated. It’s enabling and it needs to stop.”

Nicole: “I gave him a banana once he was pissed and asked me what am I supposed to do with this, I said eat it.”

Thomas: “When will Tamarac actually enforce the law.? They are Johnny on the stop to nail people on code enforcement but will not enforce this regulation.”

Rick: “Personally I do not believe this person is homeless … he has made this his so called job … if he was followed around by an investigative person I believe we would be enlightened.”

Alex: “Who cares?? Doesn’t bother me. Give the guy a few cents or don’t and move on.”

Kenny: “One of these guys stole my patio pillows to lay it down as a bed behind one of my neighbors home, when they were not home for weeks. When I called the police to make a report he said maybe they flew away, so I played stupid and walked around the neighborhood, and found them laid out neatly like a bed three houses down from mine. I also learned that one of these bum’s parents live in Tamarac and he can’t live there because of his drug addiction, so he hangs out and sleeps in the streets of Tamarac to be close to home. I also observed one of them sleeping under a tree that had overgrown branches and leafs for weeks. I called police but it didn’t even make a difference, it was still happening. If I would of known about this before buying a home, I would not have made the purchase. You can’t raise kids around these guys, just take a good look at the body language they display, one of them even walks around like he’s some kind of gangster rapper, swinging his arms and pointing his finger like it’s a gun or something, clearly this is a drug problem.”

Carolyn: “I saw him on commercial and university recently and offered to get him McDonald’s since it’s right there on the corner he was begging at. He then proceeded to tell me “I don’t eat that crap” I said well then you’re not eating on me tonight. Who knew…..a homeless man who tries to eat healthy.”

Heather, who lives close to University and Commercial Boulevard, saw him boasting that he makes up to $600 a day.  She encouraged others not to give money and shared her reasons why here:

“This is the same man who snapped a buck out of my hand like it was the last one on Earth when I moved here almost six years ago all without a thanks. The same man that I’ve heard brags about making $600.00 plus to employees at a nearby gas station on his good days. The same man that I watch go buy a handful of lottery tickets, beer, milk and smokes every single.day when he’s done begging.

I see it with my own eyes….all the time! I sit there at the light and watch the game they have going on. Where they claim on their signs to have a disabled wife and they are out of work. Yeah, it’s always the same woman that sits off, over on the corner, “appearing” to be the ever supportive wife. yep…same wife, different husband depending on the day. (We call her “Sharon” since they all appear to be ‘shar’in’ her. (I’ve seen her working the light at University and Southgate by herself too) Most the time they go get a room for at least the night, if not the week (which includes maid service and fresh towels, if they choose). I am assuming, since I’m sure they get a discount over at that motel on the other side of Cheddars.

I’m sorry, but there is only one person over there that asks for money that I can tell really needs it. I’ve seen him sleeping on the hard concrete sidewalks at Salvation Army and that’s a man named Darryl. He’s had a stroke and he pushes a cart with all his worldly belongings inside. All I’ve ever witnessed him do is use an outside outlet to charge his phone. He’s just as happy with a hot dog or two with mustard and a coke from the fountain machine at 7 Eleven as he is with a few bucks. (Not the best dinner for a stroke patient but it’s better than nothing) I’ve never seen him sloppy drunk, or even drunk for that matter, on drugs or causing any problems at all.

Panhandling-June27All the others? Yes, two in particular are dangerous in my opinion. One will come up behind you while you are shopping over by Target and will try to trap you between him and your open car door and really pressure you for money. This one on particular looks and smells nasty dirty. He has an afro style hairdo and from time to time you’ll see him riding a bike and/or sleeping in the Taco Bell parking lot. The other one is a white man, usually looks cleaner than the last but has lost so much weight over the years, possibly to a drug problem. His clothes just hang on him and he is usually standing on the east side of the intersection, closest to Checkers has acted as if he was going to attack my vehicle on the passenger side where my teenage son was because I wouldn’t give him my change which was around 10 plus dollars and he saw it through my window while approaching me coming out of the drive thru at Taco Bell. He was so very obviously high out of his skull that night, but still, he scared me half to death!! I live extremely close to the intersection they all work. I see what they pull all.the.time.

Oh, and while this guy in the picture is shopping at Publix with everyone’s hard earned cash, he’s getting the very best food he can. Better than most of us can afford. Trust me, they all make some pretty good cash and this guy on particular makes some serious bank. Don’t believe me??? Go park on a corner of University and Commercial and just watch them for a little bit. You will get a much bigger/clearer picture of what’s really going on. Then tell me that I deserve to live homeless and without food because I don’t buy into the game. I have lived a pretty hard life. You don’t see me out there with my hand out.

Lastly, these guys aren’t just a parasite (not including Darryl) on Tamarac. The guy in the picture travels all up and down University but from what I’ve seen usually works between Commercial all the way to Broward Blvd. So that’s also Lauderhill and Sunrise as well as Tamarac. Ugh….like I said…I’ve lived here for almost six years. I will admit that it does really upset me to see this go on and on and on. And now it’s gotten to be entertainment to see what hijinks they will be up to now, every time we go out. I’d love to see that whole area cleaned up.

At first, yes, I thought it was sad. What is really sad is watching a person take advantage of people that have hearts of gold and feel sorry for them. All of it…..tax-free! Imagine making $600.00 a day and not having to pay any tax on it. From the sounds of it, it looks like they have some police officers that could care less about the issue as you can see them completely ignore the beggars/bums and keep on driving. Yet, the last time this subject came up on here I did see quite a few officers out there chasing them off and it worked for about three weeks.

These people very obviously choose to live like this. It’s extremely lucrative for them. Why should they stop?? Even if they only made $50-75 a day they are still making more than a good deal of us since they don’t pay taxes. Stop falling for this!! If you want to help the one that needs it the most, please help Darryl, the man that’s had a stroke. You can tell who he is.”

About Sharon Aron Baron

Sharon Aron Baron Sharon Aron Baron is the Editor of Talk Media and writer for Tamarac Talk and Coral Springs Talk. Tamarac Talk was created in 2010 to provide News, Views and Entertainment for the residents of Tamarac and to give resident's a forum. We are not affiliated with the City of Tamarac. That's why this site can be occasionally opinionated and obviously open.

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  • SusieQ

    Yes, many of these people pose as being homeless and beg for money. I prefer to give to accredited charities.