Altar Ego

You know the guy I’m talking about. The one who is the first to get up and implore, cajole and nudge others to give to a worthy cause. He doesn’t give much himself but agrees to use his good name as an endorsement. I say that this type of hornswaggler has an Altar Ego.

A non-profit organization gets desperate to make ends meet. They use the Altar Egotist who employs a catchphrase such as ”Give until it hurts!” to ring your emotional chime. Except that I can quote economic scripture, too, and my favorite verse is “Charity begins at home”. I’m not saying that all these fundraisers are dirty rotten scoundrels. What I am saying is that it is not right to put people into a tough money-spending decision-making quandary. I’ve noticed that well-intentioned souls leave millions of dollars for medical research or for a new study program at a university. That’s very nice, indeed. But how many people would have been clothed and fed if the donor had given a million less for their name on a building or wall and to soup kitchens instead?

Some people are quick to give big bucks for a new fancy place of worship rather than make do with a lesser facility. Sure, everyone wants to pray in a nice place and to brag to their friends, relatives and acquaintances how they helped make it so. But, at what price glory?

My feeling is that Mr. Altar Ego should put up his own money AND shut up. The rest of us can measure guilt feelings on our own and act accordingly.
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