Monday, December 13, 2004

More money than sense

Or perhaps what I should say is "all money, no compassion". I heard an ad this morning on the radio for the Columbia Country Club. Dues for the holiday season are lowered to a thousand dollars a year. Whoa! Then I wondered what kind of good you could do with that thousand dollars. The big thing on my mind this time of year is hunger. So I went to the website of the Central Missouri Food Bank because last year around now Allen took some of us from work to help with a Food Drive they had in conjuction with several local radio statons. Allen and I and a few other folks got around $400 and two dozen boxes full of stuff in the six hours we worked the tent.

According to their info of the 677,400 people in the area they serve, 84,000 (12.4%) live at or below the national poverity level. A single adult with one child has to earn an hourly wage of $12.40 in order to be self-sufficient. That's what, four times the minimum wage? And they (the food bank) manage to meet 55% of the need in their area. I remember last year hearing something about a single ten dollar donation would feed one and a half people for a month. Those numbers may be wacky but still, a thousand dollars given to the food bank would go a long way I think.

Which is not to detract from the rich, country-club people who do donate money (or more importantly, time) to the food bank (or other worthwhile charities). To those people (I don't know many rich people so I don't know any) I say "well done and thanks". However I won't say anything to the others since if they don't care about the hungry then it's very likely little I say will break through their "Wall of Indulgent Self Importance".


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