Every holiday we share this concern with our blog community that is mostly ignored or overlooked.
Here goes . . .
AMID CHRISTMAS GIVEAWAYS WE CAN'T AFFORD TO CONFUSE CHARITY WITH THE FIGHT FOR TRUE SOCIAL JUSTICE!!!
An explanation . . .
Compiled by the good Catholics at St. Mary's check commonplace Christmas confusion:
Charity = Social service. Charity provides direct services like food, clothing, shelter.
Justice = Social change. Justice promotes social change in institutions or political structures.
Charity responds to immediate needs.
Justice responds to long-term needs.
Charity is directed at the effects of injustice, its symptoms. Charity addresses problems that already exist. Otherwise put: LOVE MOPS UP.
Justice is directed at the root causes of social problems. Justice addresses the underlying structures or causes of these problems. Otherwise put: JUSTICE TRIES TO MAKE SURE THE MESS ISN'T MADE TO BEGIN WITH.
Generally . . . Charity is private, individual acts.
Justice is public, collective actions.
Once again it's important to remember the conclusion of a great essay from Slate, this passage especially:
William Jewett Tucker, a reverend and future president of Dartmouth College, put it this way in 1891: Critiquing Carnegie's "Gospel of Wealth" he declared that a society could make no greater mistake than asking charity to do the work of social justice.
However . . .
GIVEN COVID-19 ECONOMIC DEVASTATION, NOBODY SHOULD BE PICKY ABOUT HELP FOR THOSE WHO NEED IT!!!
Just as there's "no such thing as an atheist in a foxhole" — A desperate lack of cash does a lot to open people's minds.
A glimpse at local good deeds:
You decide . . .