What does it mean to be a white, female, 21-year-old American? It feels pretty gross at times.
I share an apartment with another white, female, 21-year-old American who studies biology and psychology at CCU. I don’t make enough money through jobs at school to cover my basic monthly bills, excluding entertainment and “other.” There’s about a $600 deficit between income and necessary expenses. I don’t live in “normal” apartments; I live in the low-income complex. I can only go to school because of scholarships and grants. I have debt from credit card (to pay the bills that aren’t covered by working) and school loans. These are what is now recognized by the Twitter hashtag #firstworldproblems.
Yeah, sure. Americans have their issues. I know that we have an extremely high unemployment rate, people are starving, people are homeless, people are dying, and people are not OK. But after trolling the Internet with Wi-Fi on my MacBookPro, I’ve realized that Americans in general can do a lot more worldly good by just doing it.
To refrain from sounding like the ‘90s-era Nike catch-phrase, I’ve discovered (and if you took a few minutes time to look this up, you’ll see it too) that aiding charities and organizations in the digital age is so easy an 8-year-old that got hold of Mommy’s credit card could do it. The Internet has nullified all my excuses for not supporting charitable organizations. Also, it’s humbling.
Taking a gander at some of these websites like Kiva.org, WorldWildlife.org, and BigCatRescue.org makes it impossible for me to keep the blinders on. Oh, I’m a student. Oh, I don’t have the money to do that. No, I can’t buy that T-shirt when I can use the money for something else (like the Buy 2 Get a Third Book Free deal at Barnes and Noble). Riiiight.
While not everyone does have the ability to give aid to these types of organizations, you are 99.9% more likely than them to not have a real excuse. Come on, don’t lie. You can probably buy a T-shirt from the It Gets Better Project, or a bracelet from Hands Up Not Hand Outs or can spare a $25 microloan to someone on Kiva.org (and you get that money back!). Besides, if you’re on a website about empowering women, about listening to them, why not start now? Online shopping is easy, which is essentially what this is. With the Internet, you can find a way to give to an organization of your choice in less than 5 minutes. You’ll feel better about it. Make it a belated New Year’s Resolution. Why not? What’s your excuse?