Homeless Eighner Analysis

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We’ve all been down on our luck before, but some are dealt a worse hand than others. Usually in these situations no one is to blame, and yet this mode of thinking doesn’t seem to extend to the homeless: a person becomes homeless due to their poor decisions. But why do we blame homeless people for being homeless? Negative stereotypes regarding homelessness are pervasive in our culture. In today’s society, it is too easy to look down upon those who’ve lost their houses and livelihoods. America’s promise to its citizens is that if you work hard enough, then you will be successful and prosperous. With a perspective like that in mind, it’s easy to see how people can believe that those who aren’t successful must not work hard. People naturally assume …show more content…

He takes on this role in a subtle way that can be hard to catch if you’re not looking for it, but is still extremely effective. Within the first paragraph, Eighner acts as a teacher to the readers. He is educating his readers on something that’s not well known like the origin of the word Dumpster, and in doing so, he becomes more knowledgeable on the subject than us. He never outwardly puts himself in a position of power over his reader, he just naturally assumes this role through his method of communication with his audience. Eighner then uses his authority in the subject to give us, his readers, advice for our future endeavors in Dumpster diving. Although he is technically asking us the question, when he writes “what is safe to eat?” is feels like it’s coming from the audience because we don’t know the answer. He never comes off as pretentious or a know-it-all because he’s helping us readers, he’s giving us …show more content…

He’s an honest person surviving the best he can without breaking his moral code. He doesn’t like drinking the in afternoon because he doesn’t want to cause a public disturbance when he has no place to go. Additionally, Eighner depends on dumpster diving to feed himself and his dog, and yet he still has “never placed a bogus order to increase the supply of pizzas” (402), even though it would mean he would have a meal for the night. He doesn’t commit these petty offenses because he doesn’t see himself as separate from those who work in the pizza restaurant. He doesn’t feel entitled to inconveniencing the restaurant just because he won’t have food. The fact that he would refuse himself food based on his moral principle makes him more relatable to his readers because it withstands their own views. Moreover, Eighner is completely honest with his audience. Throughout the beginning of his essay, the ideal of Dumpster diving almost seems pleasant. He never has to pay for his meals and he sometimes finds a bit of cash. However, rather than “paint to romantic a picture” of what his life is like, he gives the readers a reality check. It almost comes as a surprise when he says “no matter how careful I am I still get dysentery at least once a month… Dumpster diving has serious drawbacks as a way of life” (404). While we know that dysentery is exceedingly common for someone who

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