On July 18, when I was running an errand in downtown Portland, I noticed an elderly Black man sitting in a wheelchair on a MAX platform. He was wearing a baseball cap and shouting, “Help a disabled vet!”

I approached but stood across the street. I watched him as he continued shouting, but no one gave him money. I thought to myself, “Should I give money to this man?”

People who continued walking by acted like he wasn’t there, or as if he were a threat to society. As much as I wanted to give the man a few dollars, I chose not to because I wanted to go home for the day.

Perhaps we all have had this kind of experience.

Eric Brown

North Portland