I saw two beggars the entire time I was in China, and they had real problems (one of them had no legs). There were plenty of people selling stuff on the side of the street though. Why don't we have that in America? Because it's illegal. Our unintended consequence of banning most street vendors is beggars everywhere. And our only response to beggars is to try to ban them or force them to live as dependents, instead of letting them be productive members of society.
We have a sick society in some respects and it's our own fault.