Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Giving verses Giving Back

I have been doing some thinking on this lately.

When I was younger, we were taught to give to others. That giving to others was the charitable thing to do. Giving to charity was lending a helping hand to those in need. It made one feel better about themselves in part for performing a selfless act. Giving is not really taught that much any more. Nowadays the lesson that is taught is “giving back”. There is a big difference. Giving is a personal act of charity whereas giving back is repaying a dept, it is in affect an obligation. You give back something you took. Giving back to society as they now say, is treated more as an obligation than a personal act of charity. It is as though anyone that does anything to reach a certain level of prosperity or fame owes it all to society and as such has an obligation to return something to the community. As though they had little to do with where they have gotten. Sorry but no. I already meet or exceed my “obligations” to society and the community by being a law abiding, tax paying citizen. Anything above or beyond that is a personal gift of giving that I elect to make, not something I owe.

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