One Iowa man's unique response to panhandlers - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

One Iowa man's unique response to panhandlers

Posted: Updated:
(CNN) -

A Good Samaritan found out not everyone-- asking for help-- wants it.

The Iowa man offered two panhandlers a job.

What they told him-- and what he did next-- has gone viral online.

Some would call it tough love.

"The only way you can ever succeed in life is you just got to push yourself and don't let anyone stand in your way," said Mike Pothoff, the man who offered panhandlers a job.

On this corner in Muscatine, you can find panhandlers several times a week. Two are regulars.

After feeling bad for the boys Mike Pothoff offered them a job at his business.

"I said you're hired and then said we're not from around here and i said well you're here and then they just smirked," said Pothoff.

Over the weekend the same boys were back at it... holding signs saying they're broke and hungry.

Once again Mike offered them a job. They declined. So Mike decided to join them.

Pictures captured Mike standing on the corner with them... holding his own sign. It said "offered these guys a job. they said no. don't give them money."

The picture has gone viral...

"All of a sudden it just went kaboosh I mean it just blew up," he said.

While Mike doesn't have a problem with panhandlers he says he wants to make sure they really need the help.

"It upsets me that we have younger kids or people that can work that are doing that," said Pothoff.

It's not the first time Mike says he has offered a job to a panhandler to only have them turn the offer down.

"It's about you know people that really do need money and maybe they do but I think they can work too."

And he says it won't be the last time either.

"If they're going to stand out there and hold a sign and ask for money and say they're homeless I can hold a sign out there i offered these guys a job don't give them money," he said.

In Muscatine, people are allowed to panhandle as long as it's not done aggressively.

Powered by Frankly