The ‘S’ Word

October 24, 2008 at 2:01 pm Leave a comment

I’d like to engage the ‘S’ word if you don’t mind.  I’m an entrepreneur, a de facto capitalist, and I’m also for Spreading the Wealth.  But I have to admit I’d rather invest in someone, when there’s a choice, than give the gift that keeps on needing to be given.  Mainly because I think it’s more progressive in the literal sense; gifts of charity can make the person on the receiving end feel less-than, while investing in someone empowers and heals.

Last month I started a Fetch Team on Kiva, and already half of my $25 loan has been repaid.  It’s really cool to imagine how proud the loan recipient must be to be able to repay what was borrowed.  Anyone can join the team. I’d love to have some company on Team Fetch.  This is not an appeal by the way, it’s an invitation!  For only $25 you can have a direct impact on poverty by helping someone on the other side of the globe become self-employed.  It’s a loan, not a gift.  You can choose who you to loan your money to, based on location, type of business, gender of entrepreneur, and so on.  I chose to support a furniture maker in the Ukraine, because some of my friends are furniture makers, and I believe in the value of the craft. But there are all kinds of people to loan to…take a look and read some of their stories.

I realize none of this has anything directly to do with pets. But I think in the big picture, we treat our animals with kindness and dignity not just because they are sweet and adorable and give us so much, but also because acts of kindness and dignity lift us all up a little.  And besides, poverty pretty much guarantees that animals will be the last concern, and the last mouth to feed, if there is enough to go around.

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