So after the whole mess about #Kony, we recently learned that Mike Dairy, famous for exposing mistreatment at Apple’s Chinese sweatshop is actually just famous for lying about Apple’s Chinese sweatshop. What is it about white people going to other countries for a couple of weeks, deciding they know what’s best for them and then coming back to America and telling exaggerated or downright incorrect stories about those other countries in attempt to “save” their inhabitants, not to mention make a nice name and a pretty penny for themselves? No offense white people, but after hundreds of years of barging into other people’s countries and telling them what to do, what makes you think that this time it’ll be different?
To be clear, I’m under no assumption that child soldiers are fine where they are, or that sweatshop employees are living the dream, far from it, those people are struggling. But for someone to randomly come into a country they’ve never been to before and decide after only a few days or weeks, based on no local knowledge whatsoever that they understand what’s best for the inhabitants of an entire country is ludicrous.
As many of you know, I have trouble with my mother. But that doesn’t mean that I’m going to welcome some USC grad with open arms when he busts into my house and tries to tell me what my problems are and how to solve them.
I’m not saying that we should stop helping people, just that we should stop trying to “save” people we know nothing about just because we heard a poor, dirty foreigners style story on the radio or saw something about it on Facebook. People who live in third world countries are just as smart and capable as people who live in first world countries, they just have different resources. Granted they’re usually shittier resources, but that doesn’t mean that they need to be told what to do, or that we have better solutions than they do.
Philanthropy is great, giving to others is an excellent hobby. Nothing cures ennui faster than volunteering to help someone less fortunate than yourself. But the key is to actually help them. There are people in our own country going without food and shelter right now, there are children being abused by their parents who will be removed from their homes only to be abused by their foster parents as well. If you’re looking for a cause, there are plenty in your own community. Rather than trying to go to someone else’s house and solve their mother issues, why don’t we look at our own mother and see what’s up there? Don’t stop being generous, just do so in a way that you can do the best good: by helping people you know how to help.