Buy five and we'll donate five to ................

I remember this happening after Katrina and the tsunami

Everyone in the world, from the elementary school kids to the car dealer, raised money for the catastrophe. And while I'm all for awareness of it, after a while, the theme of give-give-give makes it seem like a hot fad and maybe that makes the fast march to indifference come even faster.

I'm giving, don't get me wrong. Giving is good. It's the whole "be part of MY GIVING ATTEMPT!"

And I'm not complaining that I'm sick of the whole "donate now!" thing. I'm more worried. I recalling how soon it goes from "donate now" to the public sort of cynicism about the people trying to jump on the bandwagon. The "For every car you purchase we give $100 to the Red Cross" sort of thing seems to gum the big picture, not make it clearer. (The big picture being what on earth should happen with/by/for these people? when? by whom?)

I'm not sure what the answer to this dump cash and run to the next big event sort of thinking does in the long term. It does dump a lot of money into the hands of people who maybe shouldn't get it.

There are a lot of interesting articles about why even the big charities might not be a safe bet. And there's a particularly interesting one I might go hunt for about why low overhead might not be the best criteria for picking a charity.

And I wish there was more public accountability for the Red Cross.


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