Monday, June 04, 2007

Monday Gripe

Being the bleeding-heart liberal that I am, I sometimes send money to random do-gooder type organizations that are watching out for the environment and animals and under-privileged children and our civil rights and other powerless things that aren’t usually a big concern for those with all the power.

There are a couple of groups that I support on a monthly basis. Then sometimes, when I’m feeling especially guilty for being a middle-class white person who unintentionally uses way more than her fair share of the world’s natural resources just by going about her day, I’ll send a one-time donation to one or more additional organizations. These are the “second tier” groups, if you will. I always make it clear that it’s a DONATION. I’m not joining anything. I don’t want a membership card. I don’t need a monthly newsletter. It’s more like: Here’s some money. Don’t bug me.

But it never works. As soon as I put that check in the mail, the floodgates open, and they spend the next two years (and probably every cent that I gave them) trying to extract more money from me. They send me “membership renewal notices” and newsletters with updates on the latest issues and free address labels. And then cool, hip-sounding people start calling and asking me how I’m doing today before trying to guilt me into sending extra money for some crisis. And then they tell all their friends’ organizations about me, so those organizations can start asking me for money too.

It drives me freaking nuts. For crying out loud, can’t they let me feel like a semi-virtuous person for five minutes after I drop a check in the mail? Just five minutes? Before raining more guilt down on my head? I’ve already got all the guilt I need. Really.

I don’t want any more mail with pictures of starving children and baby seals that are about to be clubbed to death. I don’t need any more vivid descriptions of all the horrible stuff that’s going on in the world. I can’t fix everything, and them constantly reminding me of it all is only going to make me loony.

And it won’t get them any more of my money either. I may be loony, but I’m still a tight-wad.

P.S. Want to really feel like a self-absorbed ingrate? Write a blog post about how much people who are trying to do some good in the world annoy you. It works every time, I swear.


Blogger Evil Spock said...

I used to work for Citizens Action Coalition in college, and we'd go door-to-door asking for money.

I never liked the follow-up stuff over the phone, always felt that was intrusive.

7:52 PM  
Blogger Schmoopie said...

I am with you here. I have a few organizations I like to give to, but it is tedious to deal with all of the follow-up mail that comes with it.

10:38 PM  
Blogger Stucco said...

Wanna buy some carbon credits? I've decided I have loads of them...

10:45 PM  
Blogger Jazz said...

I always wondered how much of my money actually got to it's destination, what with all the mail and appeals they send afterwards.

It's gotten to the point where I'd rather give money to a panhandler; it might go to booze, but at least it's going where I want it to go and not into more junk mail.

Save the trees!

6:51 AM  
Blogger Kara said...

You're a better person than I am. When those people stop me on the corner and ask if I want to help save the children, I ask them how many adopted children they have. They generally don't get it. And I enjoy that.

Once you're dead...I'll figure out some sort of miracle to pin on you to get the Sainthood ball rolling.

11:14 AM  
Blogger Jocelyn said...

Actually, I find you very appealing in this post--frank and funny and not at all an ingrate.

By any chance, is one of those badgering organizations The Nature Conservancy? I can't shake the bastards.

1:23 PM  
Blogger Em said...

Your gripe is totally justified. The organizations we give to would be able to do much more good if they stopped spending our money on colorful brochures and spent in on the environment/housing/aid to the poor/etc/etc

8:42 AM  

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