Hossein – University Settlement


Hossein, (50 years old) he arrived in Toronto almost 20 years ago. He is married and he as a carrier. He is staying in a homeless centre for the first. He is here because has been accused of domestic violence.Night time, at University Settlement:

F: “Is this your first night here at University Settlement? How have you heard about the shelter.”

Hossein: “Yes, it’s my first night, after 30 years living. I have heard even if i have seen in the past a lot of people sleeping on the street. I was so surprised… if there was an animal sleeping on the street they would have immediately called the police and they would have taken it immediately to the animal society. But if there are people sleeping in the cold, if you call them, I have a friend, who came late here and there may be place anywhere inside  a little place to sleep there, but because you came here late, he had to stay outside., and he is a citizen of Canada. because homelessness is just pacing there, look the space  upstairs and downstairs…what is full? It’s only they go what their computer say… the humanity of it? This is called a humanitarian countries. humanity is one of the whole building could hold 500 people? I know they have to control, but I am talking about one single person that came here late. My point is that the quality of humanity is low.”

F: “In Italy though we don’t have this organised shelter system as here in Canada”

H: “But you have family, your aunt, your uncle, your family will always be there.  There They accept you by love, but here you have to be on system… You are only a number, you are not human. If are in time they accept you, but otherwise no. They only accept everything by book, not by their heart.

F. “What do you think of this system that is based on shelter and food-bank to help the homeless?”

I think this is not helping the society, is getting worse and worse. The have to execute this people, they have to create job for them. They are putting all this budget towards this which is getting worse and worse. If the same budget would get them to places and to work, I am sure they all would work but they have to create places to provide some work for them so that all the society would be healthy. Also, the money that they give as welfare, this people would earn this money. So they would save so much money, but not paying anymore for all this shelter and food that get through for the most of the year,do you know what I mean? it’s just a way to keep everybody in one corner so that they would not be outside. It seems that is only for certain people, here. They are hiding them. It’s only protecting only your financial here, not the humanity.The police says “protect and serve” but is only protecting and serving the finance,

And they just come to challenge you and “Hey! I did that?”

If you go to jail almost 85% of the cases are domestic, because woman could call. If you call the police and say my wife of girlfriend she hit me, they may laugh at you, but the woman, calls. But if the woman call and is a false statement they come immediately. Isn’t so simply for you to go all this process of court costs all this things and at the end they only says, sorry the your charge is dropped, you are off. The humanity to me is so unfair. As an example: for animals, people spend so much money to keep a cat or dog, if you ask them to spend the same for kids. If you send the same amount of money to Africa or somewhere to support, you can guarantee the future for the rest of his life to those kids. I know animals are good, but isn’t Human heart more expensive? Where all this good quality exists  as higher creation.

F: “So, people should understand that this is a whole city, and the caring one another should be because we live in the same space. ”

H: Unfortunately this is how we kept our system. The system is when everything goes computerized. They all say the machinery life is everything. You are like a number here, not a real person. Everything comes to money”.

F. “So you are saying that here even if they give you food, they don’t treat you like a human?”

H: “There is an old saying that they say for your teachers and friends.  Don’t give them fish, teach them how to catch fish”. That’s what they are doing now, They are keeping giving to this people fishes, that’s why they become lazy and then is only about the system how to catch fish.  So, I think, If they come and create some simple job for them, they would save so much money (…).  I think the system needs to balance this. the government needs money and immediately they pay the landlords and immediately the landlords pay to them so that it goes again to government pockets again. They give from this hand and immediately they take from the other hand. This is the wheel of economy today. So, society is not helping you to grow and become a better person, is giving you to become an alien man, around the wheel of the economy: to have the money, rent a place, pay the landlord, do the shopping, and that money circles in economy and ends up in the  government pockets again.

F: “It’s like a role play.”

H: “yes, If they really wanna help people, then there should be a different way. You should come and educate people from the beginning, as kids. They should know that it takes 10 people to divorce. If you have a girlfriend and are doing fine for 10 years, once you get married and live under the same roof, within one year you get divorced. Why? Same love, same person. But as soon as you go under the same roof, the ownership comes, and they have been taught from the Childhood. It’s me, it’s mine life, all that. That’s me, and I, then they start separating. Now, take Me and if you reverse the M, is We. It’s so simple, you should do that. To be we, is so stronger even in system wise.  Even in media, Everything rules you only in individualism. This is the best benefit to their capitalism. As  I said,  If there is 4 people family, they may live with one car, one rent, one mortgage, one insurance. But when they separate there are more expenses: 4 insurances, 4 expenses and all of that.  So, it takes 10 years to get marriage and it takes one minute to divorce, that’s because the system is so set up that divorce happen so quickly.  You see so many advertisement who says “immediate divorce”, we will (…) and it takes 10 years to get marriage! All this element will lead people. In certain countries you go to the court as a couples, that’s the culture of things, and they call the wise person as a judge, and he looks at then So he looks at the couple and says come back within 6 months  and maybe in this time things will worked out. They try to give them more time to work it out better. But here is immediate.

When this happened with my wife, somebody called the police saying that I beat my wife. This happen 5 years ago. And they said: come there,  That’s was in my own properties…I went with my wife there to sign. Empty your pocket, you are under arrest to have assaulted your wife…She said, for 7 years I have been living with this name. Tell us where did he punch you he never did that to me. Because somebody called me… they don’t tell you who has called. This is private for safety, this is what they say…Your husband has to go to the court and to the jail after… No complaints nothing … It took 4 months… Every week we went  to the court… It end up that the Crown said, no evidence the charge is off. … Next day after that, they left a message from human victim society. See how immediately they leave you to that words, so this happens to family wife.

Another evidence  shows that  1001.. Police charge the parents to be unqualified to be parents for their kids. They have to go to courts back and forth. The children would take the kids away because parents cannot control the kids. You cannot own your own kids. In a way they learn by your wisdom and your love. If somebody see you spanking your kids, police would come immediately to arrest you.

F: “So you are here tonight for that reason?”

H: ”Yes, I am here after 30 years, only in the house in Toronto because my wife made a false statement again. Because woman find this tools. It was my property, we own the house. I have come here from Iran with her. She calls because she gets upset and they use this as a defender, as a tool, as a power.”

F: “So, what do you thing to do in? are you going to stay here or prepare some action?”

H: ”Yes I have to go through the legal process again, to the court, pay the lawyers, and at the end they are going to investigate, and most likely is gonna be “no fault” and the charge is gonna drop and I cannot do anything… I just become the victim of the system. Because this is the law! when the police tells me that the laws of Ontario ties our hands and we cannot even investigate your right. Just imagine what is next: next is jail, court, lawyers, back and forth. Being separate from your wife, being in the shelters or outside and after all this thing, what they say is that this is the law in Ontario.”

F:”Untill they find out all this process, what can you do?”

H: “I cannot go to my wife, to my house I have to rent another place. Last night I stayed with a friend, but tonight I didn’t want to disturb him so I came to the shelter. Also, I have no access to the shared account, and tomorrow, I am going to find money, find a place. And I have no conviction and no criminal record, for 29 years, I have been living in Toronto. I have always had good jobs, for number of years I have owned my business. I did so much work for movies, shows, theatres, and I have worked as marketing director and public relation and event planner. There are over few hundred thousand Iranian Persian community in Toronto, with their media, their tv, festivals and so on (…).

F: “Does this have an impact on your career? ”

H: “Of course it does, if this happened 5 years ago  and it was a false and now that is happened now, you cannot explain at people and they have no knowledge of domestic laws. Especially the new immigrants community. They would say: how come have they arrested you if you don’t have even beat your wife? By the time they experience it they will find out that they took years to experience. What happened to me, I have told to people and some of them they believe some others not. Life is so taught here, you have to show people “Hey, I am not guilty now!” But suffering, going through all of that but people… Now I am sitting with you in the cold and people is not there and I am so embarrassed and have this kind of reputation in the community.”

F: “How do you feel about the fact you have a work and you are now in a shelter for homeless people? ”

H: “Of course is not comfortable. But still as humanity I come from a culture of understanding and caring; we may live on different level of society but we have the same colour of blood, we have the same destination according to my spiritual belief. If you believe in a Lord of the Universe, there is no lord for Christian, Buddhist, Muslims. Lord is the quality of your true being. There is no god, if you believe in the lord of the universe. The quality of your true being is part of the energy we called God. That energy is source within you. As good see all the creation the same, you want to see the same way that God sees, because god has been giving you all that quality to learn and to practice. So this may be a good opportunity for me… From being with a politician, like premiers, police, Richmond hill elite, and all this politicians and  media, and now I am here with all this homeless people!”

F: “From rags to riches”

H: “Ahahaha, yeah. It’s a path of life, from two perspective, you know? one is from a citizen. I have  built (when some responsible citizen is invited to the jail.) in the past people seven times, people who had problems with the law. I went there and I have built them for one year.  and they all made it too without no problem. I had to monitor them for an year, they had to live with me and I have that kind of background. And I have been so helpful to people. It’s like having a cow, it’s all white but has a dot of black on it… they say this cow is not black anymore! So, all this good things you have, is one side of the skin, but they see it. even though you are not convicted yet, first you have to get through as convicted person to find out if you are guilty or not guilty.”

H: “Before 60’s the system was the relations, like you go, you talk to a judge of peace, they listen to you. They used to know from a different perspective but right now is only what the rules and regulations says, they follow it but if you have a good lawyer and you pay it you can win but if you don’t have a good lawyer, then you can lose the case.  But, my point is that, for a judge, if he knows that there is a chance that I cannot get guilty, he should defend me. But the system it says that you go to find a good lawyer and  you pay it, if you can  pay with your money a good lawyer for your defense good, otherwise you are convicted. So the just is not there anymore. If there is a law and If the legal lawyer cannot defend you, what’s the meaning of the judge, he is sitting there to judge between this and that. Instead the judge has to listen what the cons says and have lawyer protecting you. So where the justice is then? this is where I am coming from. Unfortunately humanity become classified, there is a line in there, there is no heart, no feelings, there may be there but till a certain extent. It is a great country, but you know? They keep giving you a fish, they never teach you to take a fish (…) In Toronto, 25- 30 years ago, if there was one crime, people would talk about it for a month… Now everyday it happens, new generations. The reason is because right from the beginning the path are so separated, because there is no love, no wisdom for kids, and they grows with so much problem and they go in the society and this is what happen. I think they should from the beginning, they support family life and if that is not there, the kids would go to school. And because the kids grows, and he is 20 years old, is much more difficult, that’s why they don’t face it, because their problem is so difficult.”

F: “Why do you think here in Canada the system is so structured?”

H: “This is how capitalism is. In your system the country has been developed in 400 years and has developed different laws for the system. In Europe there have been civilization for 3000 – 2000 years there are so many things have been of and for the reason there have been many different systems, it may even has experienced capitalism very long ago. Life quality is not all about money! But here on capitalist system, it may give you some feeding but  but the quality of life is not there anymore because is based on individuals and everybody learnt it immediately from the media. I, me. Ego is evil, it comes from your anger and arrogance. And this grows with you, and then you are not going to care as much about woman and friends and you become more and more alone. Media is creating that so strongly. The kids learn it right from the beginning. All this movies and cartoons are all about crimes and killing. Everybody is learning how to make crimes, so is very open. Even between 15-20 years all youth, so many crimes happening. Now, love is happening in the younger ages and the drugs and substances that they use it. They wanna hate everybody, they have never learnt how to practice love and caring. Because when they need it nobody was there. They never learnt who to love and how to care. So is getting very crucial, very difficult. Still the route is there but the new generation is always changing and changing and more… that’s why everybody feels lonely, even the wife and the husband feels lonely so that even in the marriage she has to find an affair with someone else. It would be so hard.”

“If you cannot do it with the guy and the girl that you love, how can you do it with somebody else. Do you know what I mean?”

“Sorry I kept you in the cold, thank you so much! Your patience and your compassion allowed me to talk, I am not a speech man, your company allowed my voice to come out.”


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