Posts Tagged “charity”

White Man's Burden

Helping without Hierarchy

Morality, Society · · 2 comments

The past couple weeks have brought a lot of discussion about the role of Western society in helping African nations. While I found the recent “Kony 2012” campaign problematic and misguided right from the get-go, one positive aspect is that it has sparked some discussion (though never enough) about the “White man’s burden” and the “White Savior Industrial Complex.” This issue, as with others, has raised once again the question of what part the Western world should play in these issues. Should we step into a conflict that does not affect us, merely because it offends our moral senses? Should we give our money to the first organization that puts forward a simple, clear plan of action, regardless of our own knowledge of the situation? Should we let the people of Uganda (and the neighbouring countries) fix their own problems?Continue Reading

Being a Decent Human Being for Dummies

The Duty of Decency

Morality, Society · · 4 comments

I never thought it would be so hard to be a decent human being.

How hard could it be? Just be nice to people. Yeah, just try to put other people’s needs in front of your own, and try to go out of your way to do nice things for them once in a while as well. Nobody expects you to be perfect at this, so all that’s required is that you try your best.

But what about real help? Some people need more than a shoulder to cry on, or a compliment sent their way. There are people out there who live in abject poverty, who live their lives in a constant state of malnutrition, or who struggle even to find a place to keep out of the rain and the snow. Just “being nice” is not enough to be a decent human being. I have to do something to help these people. Well, it’s a good thing there are plenty of charities set up to do just that. Great! I’ll just send in my money, let them do what they’re best at, and continue being a nice guy in my everyday life.Continue Reading