Blog on the Run: Reloaded

Friday, December 19, 2003 6:03 pm

God loves a cheerful giver


DongResin ponders some things he’d like to say to representatives of organized charities while extolling the virtues of more direct charity:

I don’t like most organized charities, since all they really are is a way to feel like you’re doing good at a nice safe distance from the people who could really benefit most from a little one-on-one kindness. Instead, give that money directly to the guy on the pavement, and don’t worry about it if he decides to spend it on crack. Chances are he really wants that crack. You’re not his parents, and isn’t it nice for a change to know exactly where your money is going?

Not long after I moved to New York after college, I was taking the No. 4 train in to work with one of my roomies when we got hit up for spare change by a guy who obviously lived on the street.

I gave him a quarter. Not much, I know, but at that time, my walking-around money for the week, including groceries, was $20. For the week. In New York. But I digress. Anyway.

“What’d you do that for?” my roomie said. “He’s just gonna spend it on booze or dope.”

I just shrugged, but I recall thinking, “Then he’s gonna get more enjoyment out of it today than I will.”

I gave away a lot of quarters in New York.

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