Helping the poor

I’m often baffled at the amount of fake advocacy that happens online. Slactivism is what it’s largely been called. One thing that plenty of people have called for is, in short, doing more to help the poor. And how do most want to help the poor? Well by the lazy method of increasing taxes in order to fund government programs. Yep, slactivism at its finest: activism by proxy of the government.

And as far as I’m concerned, unless you’re willing to get off your ass and spend your own time and money helping someone who is down on their luck or hovering around the poverty line, you don’t have any right to call for more of my paycheck to be taken from me just so you can feel better.

Instead here’s a challenge: find one family who isn’t well off. Bonus: make it a family you don’t know in an inner-city area. Find out what they need, and bring it to them. Whether that’s stocking a pantry or picking up other consumables, replacing clothing or bedding, new appliances. Whatever the case may be, spend your own time and money doing it.

This past weekend, I did just that, in case anyone here might think I’m being lazy myself. My parents had a working refrigerator they wanted gone. They offered it to me, but living in an apartment with a fridge, I didn’t need it. But I knew that my wife’s dearest friend could use it. The friend is barely scraping by while her deadbeat ex-husband is behind on the child support that is now being provided courtesy of a forced wage garnishment. We’ve shelled out for other things and have other planned purchased for them as well, but this last time around it was a fridge.

So I rented a truck (Dodge Ram 1500 Quad-cab with 6′ bed) through Enterprise. We drove the almost 3 hours to my parents to load up the fridge, letting my father do the honors in tying it down since he’s always been good with knots. And then drive it about 2½ hours out to the friend in SE Nebraska where we unloaded it, then back to Kansas City to drop off the truck at the airport and go home.

In the end it was about $200 out of my pocket for the truck rental and the gas, and about 13 hours of my time from when we left to when we got back.

Have you done anything like this? If you haven’t, and you’re idea of helping the poor is for my paycheck to be further garnished by the government through taxation, then get off your lazy ass and spend your own time and money helping a poor family in your area.

And as I said, there are other purchases still planned for the near future to replace other things that need replaced. For example, the three girls who live there need decent beds. Probably going to be give or take 1,000 USD for that all combined in the end, not to mention the time that’ll be needed getting all of that set up.

But I can afford to be that generous. Raising my taxes means I can’t be that generous. Think about that a second, if you’re one of the ones calling for higher taxes on the upper-middle and upper classes. You’d be depriving me of my ability to directly help this one family, and potentially others in the future, all so you could feel better about yourself. Fuck you.

Now I realize that most can’t be as generous as I’m able be. But there’s no need. Something as simple as buying extra groceries or other household consumables for someone on food stamps or welfare would be enough. Helping them pay for any bills on which they’re behind would do the trick. If you have the know-how, help them get caught up on any maintenance on their vehicles or look into any problems. Donate your time and money to others in need directly rather than by proxy of another organization or under the excuse of it being Christmas or Thanksgiving. But don’t just sit around and say we need to do more for the poor while simultaneously implying you mean the government via taxation.

Really want to help a family this coming holiday? Walk into one of the stores that will be open Thanksgiving night and volunteer to work that night, but give the wages you’d earn with that time to another employee who needs it. Something I recommended a couple years ago in the middle of everyone complaining about stores being open on Thanksgiving or in the middle of the night on Black Friday.

Not willing to directly help any poor family? Not going to donate to any charity that helps the poor? Only going to call for more taxation on “the wealthy” because you think they’re not paying their “fair share” (despite the evidence showing they pay well more than what’s fair)?

Just shut the fuck up, then.