Common Criticisms Of Philanthropy And How To Respond To Them

An exploration of the common list of negative viewpoints regarding philanthropy and how to respond to them.

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The purpose of philanthropy is to share some wealth with those who are less fortunate. Amazing things have been done through philanthropic organizations and thousands of lives have been positively impacted because of it. Unfortunately, there are still many common criticisms about philanthropy in general. That is why the following list of negative viewpoints held by some and how to respond to them.

  • Charity Has Been Replaced By Welfare
  • Some Philanthropists Are In It For The Wrong Reason
  • Charitable Donations Don’t Make A Difference

Charity Has Been Replaced By Welfare

Many feel that charitable giving has long been past its prime. Welfare is said to replace philanthropic causes as the government funds social and economic programs that attempt to give those at the bottom of the socioeconomic spectrum a leg up and an increased possibility of rising up out of poverty. While this is certainly the goal of welfare, it is inaccurate to believe that this is the mindset of most Americans. In fact, Americans support charitable giving as a means of helping those less fortunate more than any other individual means of doing so.

Some Philanthropists Are In It For The Wrong Reason

While it is true that there have been some philanthropists in the past who were in it for the wrong reasons, it is equally as wrong to group all who choose to give charitably into one single group. The vast majority of philanthropy is on a very small scale and is done with the best intentions in mind. The reason this criticism is so common is that the negative stories usually deal with vastly wealthy individuals. If the average donation is viewed instead, it is much easier to see that it was done with only good intentions.

Charitable Donations Don’t Make A Difference

This criticism is extremely easy to respond to. Nonprofit organizations currently account for 6% of Gross Domestic Product and employ more than one out of every ten workers. This does not include the billions worth of estimated hours in volunteer time. Without volunteer efforts, thousands of people would go without necessities or be even further disadvantaged than they already are.

Philanthropic organizations make a major impact on the way the country operates. While there will always be critics, it is important to be prepared with well thought out responses to defend this charitable giving.

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