Putting one’s money, and action, where one’s mouth is

It’s a popular pastime in certain circles to bash on rich people for not helping “the poor” and it is an unusual occurance when rich people respond with an “oh, yeah, well watch this!”

Yet, a group of rich people, including Bill and Melinda Gates, Warren Buffett, David Rockefeller, Michael Bloomberg, George Soros, Oprah Winfrey, and Ted Turner, are responding with an initiative to ask the United State’s 400 richest people to dedicate half their fortunes to charity during their lifetimes or at death. That’s a bold statement, at the very least, and if even a few people respond, a huge shot in the arm for charitable work around the world.

I know that there will be a lot of people who are skeptical that anything will result from this claim, but I see this idea as a critical step toward something that is missing in the United States today: action.

Far too many people blow far too hard about things they often only tangentially know about, yet they fail to actually do anything about the things they complain over, even if it’s just to send a check to help someone else do what needs to be done. People always want someone else to fix the problem, never comprehending that it is their demand for another’s action that helps create and sustain the problem.

I see this initiative on the part of a few very wealthy people as yet another wake up call for the rest of us: get up, get out, do something!

Even if it’s something small, even if it’s something that only benefits you, action is better than talk any day. We all have the power to make changes, if we actually make them. If the rich people everyone loves to bash can do it, what about you?


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