Tag Archives: causes

Authors Answer 146 – Being Charitable

A lot of the big authors support charitable causes or projects. They could be for education, poverty, medical, or many other causes. With plenty of money from contracts and book sales, many authors want to use the money for some good. This week’s question comes from C E Aylett.

Question 146 – If you became a big-name author, like Rowling or Lee Child, what personal projects would you pursue/create with your fame and fortune? What causes would you support?

H. Anthe Davis

I’ve never looked into this, as I doubt it would happen, but I generally support environmental causes so I’m sure I’d start there. And probably give grants to some library systems.

Tracey Lynn Tobin

I am a huge, huge, HUGE fan of the “Always Keep Fighting” campaign that was created by Jared Padalecki of the Supernatural TV show. Padalecki has suffered a great deal from anxiety and depression, and has used his fame and influence to create this campaign selling shirts with logos from the show in support of mental health awareness and support. I really respect that and admire the success he and his co-stars have had with the campaign, because I myself have also suffered – mostly in silence – from anxiety and depression. With that said, I’ve promised myself that if I ever do manage to become a big-name author with any kind of real ability to affect social influence, I’ll start my own similar pursuit to support those who don’t always know how to support themselves, because I know what it feels like to struggle with the idea that you’re all alone inside your own broken head.

Jean Davis

Assuming I was a big name author, I’d love to so some anthologies with lesser known authors to help get them noticed by readers. With anything resembling a fortune, I’d continue to support National Novel Writing Month to a better degree than I do currently. I’m sure there are many great causes out there, but that’s the one that comes to mind first.

Eric Wood

There are two I think I would support. Since I just gave blood yesterday, something I do often, I would support the blood drives. Perhaps I would get that license plate that says “vampire” for when I park at blood donor clinics. Being a teacher I would support education. Perhaps through breakfast programs or free lunches or simply rally the people around teachers and all they do. I would also consider creating scholarships for kids who wanted to pursue a degree in education.

Gregory S. Close

If I had the money and influence of someone like J.K. Rowling… Wow. I would love to contribute money, time and resources to raise funds and awareness for lesser-known diseases and cancers, like Langerhans-cell Histiocytosis (LCH). Ironically, it’s LCH Awareness Month in September and I always do some sort of fund raiser this time of year (this year, giving away free books and asking for donations in return: http://lightdarkandshadow.blogspot.com/2017/09/free-book-92-94-in-support-of.html). So hey – go get yourself a FREE BOOK! 🙂 If I had a larger social media presence, my tiny little effort would be magnified a thousand fold and might actually make a difference. That would be great.

I would also like to start a foundation (or contribute to an existing one) that focuses on teaching critical thinking, rational discourse and civility to youth. Social media has amplified how far and how fast ignorance can travel and propagate misinformation. We need to provide the tools for people to discern what really is fake news versus what some politician might claim is fake news for their own personal gain. People are arguing back and forth with very subjective, meme-based arguments that don’t make sense and don’t contribute to solutions. Love to help stop that.

Cyrus Keith

I have a dream of transforming run-down, crime-ridden neighborhoods from the inside out, being able to provide capital and a hand-up to bring local businesses back in, and provide incentives to clean up and provide self-policing efforts to reduce crime and renew hope for folks to get rid of ghettos one at a time.

Paul B. Spence

Hmm. Personal projects? Powered armor? Practical nanotechnology? A space program? I’m not sure what you were looking for here. Causes? You mean like world peace? I’m not much of a cause-head. I think I’d probably support feeding and housing the homeless. While we cannot turn a blind eye to the suffering of people in other countries, we need to put our own house in order first. We should be leading the world in education and medicine… I guess I do have a cause of sorts.

D. T. Nova

Personal projects: An animated adaptation of my writing, maybe?

Causes: clean energy and human equality.

C E Aylett

In my twenties I spent a week in east Burma, around Kengtung area. I didn’t know anything about the place – we just happened upon a ‘guide’ at the Thai border when we went to get our passports stamped to enable our visa extension, and met with him a week later and off we went. He took us to some of the mountain villages which, unbeknown to me, we weren’t supposed to go to — tourists at the time were only allowed to stay — i.e. spend their dollars in — government owned hotels (i.e. all the hotels).

The villagers had never seen white people before, and the children were hesitant to come near us, though massively curious at the same time, peeking around walls and then hiding if we looked their direction. Their hospitality was unmatched by any other place we went that whole year trip and one place in particular stands out in my mind, though I don’t know the name of the place exactly. They threw us a party, we danced all night and in the morning we had to wait until our guide had sufficiently recovered from the night before. Turned out he was into the black smoke and we had financed his addiction as this happened almost every day. So, while the men all seemed to do nothing but smoke opium, and the women seemed to have gone off to work the paddy fields from early morning, we were left with the children and the grandmothers. We had a pack of playing cards and a biro and some paper and the kids completely enthralled by us trying to teach them card games (not very successfully) and drawing around their hands and stuff. They particularly liked it when we tied our sleeping guide’s shoelaces together! (he-he) The kids were crying out to learn, it seemed to me, but there was no school for them, which was part of the oppression of the people. Turns out that area of Burma had only recently opened up to tourists and was historically where most of the rebel action happened. (Yes, research countries before you visit them!)

Anyway, getting back to the question, if I had that amount of success and it was politically possible, I would finance some schools or education projects in that area. If felt like such a waste of young minds and we could see their futures laid out before them, no hope of escape. The people were so lovely. They didn’t have much but they gave us everything they had in terms of hospitality and I would love to go back one day.

Jay Dee Archer

As a strong supporter of education and the sciences, I would probably give to one of many causes that provides good quality science education to those who are not in a good position to receive it. For example, scholarships for low income students who want to study the sciences in university, or an organisation that promotes the sciences in communities to encourage people to be more scientifically literate. With the increase in the number of people who deny climate change, are anti-vaccination, deny evolution, and get fooled by con-artists who promote dangerous pseudoscientific “cures” that don’t actually work, I think science education is more important than ever. Awareness needs to improve. That and I’d like to support clean energy.

How about you?

Which causes and projects would you support? Let us know in the comments section below.

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What I Believe In

As you saw in my last post, I am against creationism in the science classroom and against abstinence only sex education.  But what about other causes or controversial topics?  Well, here’s a list of causes with my brief answer.

  • Creationism taught as an alternative to evolution:  No.  Creationism isn’t science.  Evolution is.
  • Abstinence only sex education:  No.  Irresponsible, and doesn’t take into account that teenagers are horny and hormone-filled. Contraceptives must be taught, too.
  • Climate change is happening:  Yes.  So much evidence supports it.  Denying climate change doesn’t stop it from happening.
  • Destroying vast amounts of land for natural resources: No.  Stop it.  Things like oil are going to run out, so it’s better to search for renewable energy sources.
  • Nuclear power: This one is tricky.  It’s efficient, it produces a lot of energy, and it is relatively safe (coal produces more radiation, oil and gas produce far more pollution).  But when problems happen, that’s when we have a big problem.  Now, nuclear fusion would be nice.
  • Research into nuclear fusion: Big yes.  This would solve so many energy problems.  The fuel source is incredibly abundant (hydrogen), and the byproducts of fusion are benign (helium).  If it could work successfully, it would be wonderful.
  • Research for a cure for ALS and other unprofitable cures: Yes.  This has to do with responsibility to fellow humans, and not about exploiting them for profits.  I don’t care if a disease is relatively rare, work should be done to search for treatments and cures.
  • Gay rights:  Gay people should be allowed to marry, absolutely.  They should not be discriminated against.
  • Racial equality:  Yes, absolutely.  I don’t care where you’re from, I think I can get along with people from any background.  Well, I do care where people are from, mainly because I’m interested in cultures and countries.
  • Gender equality: Yes, definitely.  They should receive equal pay, they should have equal rights.  Everywhere.  That means you too, Middle East.
  • Public breastfeeding:  Yes.  Babies need to eat.
  • Profit vs environment:  Profit loses.  Environment should be protected, even if it deprives us of some natural resources.
  • Poaching of endangered species: Kill the poachers.  Honestly.  They’re scum.  They may be human, but they are not worth it.
  • Free medical care: Yes.  No one should have to pay for it.
  • Free university:  Yes.  Some countries made it work.  We need educated people, not heavily indebted people.
  • Genetically modified food: We’ve been modifying food for millennia, actually.  We’ve just become better at it.  However, there’s a problem with genetically modified crops mixing with natural vegetation.  They need to be kept separate.  Whether they’re bad for people or not, the jury is still out on this.  I’m cautious about this.  I’m sitting on the fence.
  • International conflict:  Grow up! Politicians, leaders, terrorists, you’re all bickering children.  Bickering children with big weapons.  You’re the dangers.  Learn to get along, go back to school.  We need more responsible leaders, not petty idiotic leaders who are in it for themselves.
  • Religious freedom: I’ll believe what I want, you can believe what you want.  Don’t try to change my mind.  I will shut you up.  I won’t push what I believe on you, so respect that, please.
  • Space exploration: Fully support it.  We’re screwing up this planet, so let’s find other places to go if we need to.  Colonise Mars.  But don’t screw that world up in case there is life there.
  • Medical marijuana: Yes, go for it.  But to smoke it in public, no thank you.  The smell is awful and makes me feel sick.  Keep it away from me.  And this leads to…
  • Smoking in public: I wish this would be banned from public places completely.  I don’t need your vile habit going into my or my child’s lungs.  Keep it in your home, as long as you have no children.  Keep it away from children.  Make it illegal to smoke around children, I say.
  • Antibacterial soap: Ban the stuff.  Now.  It’s creating stronger bacteria and is a hazard to our health.  Some places already have banned it.
  • Protect our little snowflakes: Kids are protected from too much these days.  They can’t run around outside with their friends because they may fall down and scratch their precious little knee, then the parents will sue the school, the city, the friends, anyone.  It’s this idiocy that’s causing children to become unhealthy blobs of fat who can’t exercise any kind of independence because their parents won’t let them.  Parents, you’re raising people, not fine china or collectibles that must be kept in mint condition.
  • The customer is always right:  No way.  Bad customers deserve to be denied service and thrown out.
  • Children should be protected from anything related to sex: No. They’ll learn about it from friends, from TV, from the Internet.  I say talk to your kids about it, honestly.
  • Teaching of history: Please be honest, and don’t give us biased drivel.  I don’t like the kind of history education that portrays your home country as the best in the world, while all the others are wrong.  This is propaganda.  Be honest, please.  Maybe that way, countries will get along.
  • Vaccinations: Absolutely.  The whole anti-vaccination movement is dangerous and damaging.  Diseases are coming back because of this lapse in judgment.  Autism isn’t caused by vaccines, either.  No research has shown that it does.  Autism is genetic.

I think that’s enough for now.  Any that I missed?  Ask me about my opinions, and I’ll answer in the comments.  What do you think?