Friday, June 13, 2008

Political funding vs charity donations

A few times during this lengthy campaign, people have commented that it's obscene how much money has been donated to the candidates when it would do a world of good if given to charities instead. I have a few complaints with such a position, though on the surface it's appealing. My major disagreement, though, is to point out that people are donating to effect change -- the same sort of change charities work with -- because they feel our current political path has become overgrown. Thus, the increase of monetary donations probably stems from a similar stimulus that gives to charity. And while I haven't given to charity for awhile, I did donate (twice? thrice?) to Obama's campaign because I believe that we should not be spending billions on a war in Iraq while there are problems that can be solved with that money here and in poverty stricken areas of the world. 

One of the things I've noticed a few times on Obama's website is that the "donate now" button becomes replaced with a similarly worded message asking for donations on behalf of the Red Cross. Here's one example . This is just one more reason I think Obama actually does go about things differently; he knows he has a huge group of followers and he attempts to channel that: into hope at rallies, into plans for volunteer "gap years" for young people, into pleas to help those affected by natural disasters. Amidst all the coverage of his campaign -- and politics as usual -- this is something different.

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