Friday, October 2, 2015

Philanthropy Friday: Excellence in opera or saving a life? Your choice.

By Peter Singer

Many Americans give to charity, but few do any research on the charities to which they give. Much of that is what psychologists call “warm glow” giving.... Meeting social expectations drives another segment of giving. Few will ask how much money is already going to breast cancer research or whether our donation would be more worthwhile if directed elsewhere. Today, effective altruists are asking these tough questions. There are some things that we cannot really consider priorities until we have met all our more urgent needs; but from a universal perspective, our urgent needs are of no greater significance than the urgent needs of others. If we are willing to sacrifice the highest levels of excellence in opera for the health of those we love, but not for those who are far away, we are not doing the most good we can. [link]