The Season for Donation Requests - The Missourian: Opinion

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The Season for Donation Requests

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Posted: Wednesday, December 18, 2013 5:30 pm

Maybe we are just in another fit of forgetfulness, but we have ranked this as the all-time high year in requests for donations through the mail. They have been coming every day now for about a month. They do arrive year-round, but this is the heavy season for requests.

As far as we know, most seem to be from legitimate organizations. The majority of them arrived with those stick-them-on return address labels. They have been coming for years. If this writer was age 21, he would have a lifetime supply!

Another eyecatcher is to include a nickel, even a quarter in some requests, which doesn’t move this mind to dig deeper. It used to be a couple of pennies. Now it’s upsell time with a few cents more. That hasn’t motivated our checkbook.

If you are a veteran, the requests are constant, like a rapid-fire automatic weapon, say .50 caliber, from organizations aiding the former military guys. A number of these organizations help those who have been wounded and/or paralyzed from being hit in combat. With us, they have a priority. Also, high on the list are pleas to help those in veterans’ hospitals.

There are many worthwhile religious organizations that do so much good and need donations. We don’t know how they, and other groups, obtain names, but they do. Once on the list you seem to be there forever. Some organizations must have thousands of names on their mailing lists.

If you attended a college they never forget you. The mailings for donations are endless. The same goes for colleges or universities your children attended. Private high schools rely on gifts. They send reminders and seek money. Then there are the many foundations that send regular requests. The list of foundations established by associations is growing. They, too, hit the mail, aimed at you.

For every disease that pops up in the world, there are groups soliciting money for research in an attempt to control the problem. They are good organizations and some progress is being made in many medical areas. The requests to help children with medical problems are particularly appealing and growing.

Then a disaster strikes, and monetary help is needed, the letters come. Again, these are worthy causes.

Every now and then, a group is investigated and found to be a scam. Then there are those groups that pad their administrative costs and not much is left for the cause to be helped. But the majority are OK.

All will agree we can’t support every request for funds. We have to pick and choose guided by what’s available to donate.

Americans are as considerate as they are generous. They make sacrifice after sacrifice to give help where needed. No other country can match what Americans give in charity. We count our blessings and at the same time reach out to those in need. The reach varies, but it’s always there.

/opinion

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