Tuesday, February 19, 2013

You're a Fucking Asshole

"Ha! This is going to be awesome!" you might be saying to yourself. "Kevin's going to talk about how other people are fucking assholes." No, sorry, but that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about you. The fucking asshole in question is you. You are the fucking asshole, you fucking asshole.
Now, I don't know you personally, so maybe you're a fucking asshole for lots of reasons or maybe you're not even a fucking asshole. However, if you're reading this, chances are good that something in this article applies to you. Because you're a fucking asshole. Let's get started.

You don't give any money to charity, or you give a small amount just once or twice a year. Let me just be clear, in terms of being a fucking asshole, these two things are the same. Now, to the charity you give to, the money you give -- even if it's once a year, even if it's a relatively small amount -- can make a difference provided the charity in question knows what it's doing.
But in asshole world, you and the person that never gives are the same. Maybe you're even a little bit worse because unlike the schmuck that blatantly doesn't give a fuck whether people other than him live or die, you're pretending like you care. You're not even giving anything away, you're just buying the feeling you get from telling your friends you "give" to charity. Fuck you. You're as selfish an asshole as the guy who doesn't give anything, you just don't have the balls to admit that you don't really care, and too insignificant to have another reason for people to like you.

And for those of you that don't give anything at all, my initial, emotional response to people like you is "Fuck you." However, if I take a second to calm down and really think about it, I want to say "Fuck you." You're alive, did you notice? You're also reading this on a computer, or, bonus points, a tablet or phone, so I can safely assume that you're not dead and not destitute. Now unless you're Tarzen, king of the fucking jungle with no parents and having fought your way through lions and poisonous snakes and I-don't-give-a-serious-fuck-what-else since you were born, you got help from somebody at some point in your life, somebody who gave a shit whether somebody besides themselves succeeded and survived. That seemed to fucking work out well, didn't it? You living, non-destitute asshole. Why not extend that success some more? Do you think living is a zero-sum game and if some child in Africa doesn't die of Malaria you lose a year off your life?

"But," you say, speaking in the direction of a computer assembled by a group of people whose combined daily salary couldn't buy the McValue meal you had for breakfast, "I don't owe those people anything." And that's a valid point. You really don't owe the Egg McMuffinless of the world a damn thing, but, here's the thing, nobody gives a fuck about what you "owe" anybody or how much they "owe" you or why to assholes like you, the latter is always more than the former. Does it effect you at all that another human being can be born with a disease that liquifies their insides and that could have been prevented with the spare change in your couch? Does it bother you at all that children through no fault of their own (except the conscious decision to be born in a poor country) live their entire lives hungry and starve to death? If you do care, but still don't do anything, please refer back to my initial response. (Refresher: It was "Fuck you.") If you really don't care, well then I guess I'm just curious why other people would care about you then.

"Well," you say into your tablet PC that's worth enough to feed, clothe, house and educate any child in any poor country in the world for a year, "I'm not like those guys. I have the genuine excuse that I can't afford it." No, you fucking asshole, you can. You just don't want to. I don't even know what to call you, but if I had to choose one word, it's "childish". You're the exact combination of being unable to distinguish needs from wants and too fucking dumb to know how much a dollar is worth. You may think you're some industrious, poverty-stricken hero, scraping to make ends meet, but you're fucking not. I don't even have the time and space to tell you all the fucking idiotic ways you blow your money, but let's just say it's starts with an "E" and ends in an "verything." You could have spared $40 a month to prevent a child from dying from something dumb like mosquitoes, but you just had to have a brand new phone to take pictures of your dinner and yourself in the bathroom. You're the worst kind of moron, and that includes fucking morons. Learn how not to buy everything goddamn thing your heart desires and figure out what a dollar is worth, because some people can't afford to wait for you to grow the fuck up.

"But, I give money every week to my church," you interject. Oh man, if the first category of people is selfish and the second category is childish, then you're just flat out fucking dumb. You're the type of asshole that pays an extra $20 for a sandwich if I told you it was holy, aren't you? Be honest now.

See, giving to a charity should be thought of like buying a product. A good charity provides a great, life-changing service at a cheap price, and a bad charity provides little-to-no benefit. It's about efficiency of money, you see. Each dollar given to charity is not always worth one dollar, it could be more or less depending who does what with it. Now, with this in mind, why would you give money to a church that blatantly and openly wastes its resources constructing buildings just to hear some guy (who is living off your donations, by the way) talk about something you already know about. (Not to mention the money those places are already saving in America on not paying property taxes by being religious. Meanwhile, organizations that are solely dedicated to helping others have to pay in full.) And when churches actually get to the charity part, much of the resources are spent on proselytizing instead of of actually helping.

If you give your money to the Catholic Church, it's worse than useless; It's harmful. AIDS is the 3rd biggest killer in low-income nations and the 6th biggest killer worldwide. the Catholic Church helped AIDS reach that goal by telling people that condoms don't prevent it, or that people shouldn't use condoms, or that we're still living in the 13th century. In addition to throwing your money away on one of the most wasteful organizations in the world, you're funding an AIDS-encouraging propaganda machine. Take that money and give it to a good charity or just light it on fire. It'll be better for everybody.

Now, I want to be clear on a few things when comparing charities to churches. I send give your money to a good charity. A charity that wastes much of its money on needless expenditures and concentrates too much on sending messages is no different than a church, and therefore an equally inefficient use of money. But, even a good charity has expensive offices, spreads a message and pays their employees, so what's the difference? Well, first of all, charity offices are usually not overly ornate, at least not in the sense that they have expensive art and golden altars decorating them. Also, a charity office is dedicated to making the charity function better and serve those in need. In other words, it helps facilitate the money from the people giving it to the people needing it. A church is for you, the person that sits in it, the person that gave the money. One is a well-organized location whose sole purpose is to make the world suck less, the other is for you, to sit.

And the salaries are the same way. The people at good charities are educated in this field, they've dedicated their lives to it, and have years of experience. The guy at the church's qualifications are that he read the same book over and over again. Charities often have a message, but that message is usually "not dying is important". Churches have a similar message, but with a "join our church" thrown in there. Which one is a better use of your money? Which one keeps more people alive?

Now, I have to put a disclaimer here, because this is a nuanced issue but Christians still lose their shit over the slightest bit of warranted criticism, so here it is. I don't care if you go to church, and I don't care if you give money to the church because you want. If you're interested in giving to charity, giving to a church is better than nothing, but there are better alternatives.

Have you made it this far without being called a fucking asshole? Congratulations. You regularly give a respectable sum of money to a good charity that doesn't waste money and helps change people's lives, and you do it for no reason other than it's the right, human thing to do. You're genuinely making the world a better place. Give yourself a pat on the back, and then immediately stop fucking patting yourself on the back. Take a look around, dipshit, does it look like poverty's over? When I ate my Cheerios this morning, I didn't see any goddamn unicorns or rainbows in it, so I guess the world's not fucking perfect after all. Surprise.

Look, I know you care and I believe it, but why are you so complacent? We're not done with this task yet, so there's no time to rest. I'm not asking you to sell all your Earthly possessions to move to India and feed children with your bare hands (although that shit is fucking hardcore) but just...it's like farting, alright? I'm sure at some point in their lives, everyone has met a group of people, most likely guys, who think that farting in front of each other is totally ok. Maybe you used to be or still are one of those guys. Anyway, these guys are in an environment where nobody tells them that "Dude, that's fucking gross. Cut it out." Well, everyone person who isn't doing their fair share to make the world suck less is making a big fart right in your face, and you're letting them.

At some point, for reasons beyond me, it became rude to point out that people not bothering to give anything to somebody dying are fucking assholes. If you care about the cause you give money to, you shouldn't be afraid to let people know when they're not even helping a reasonable amount. Let's say we need to move a piano out of a room. We have two strong men with Ph.D's in lifting shit, and twenty handicapped kindergarteners. Is it unreasonable to suggest that the two big guys with doctorates in picking up should do most of the work. Is it unreasonable to call them assholes when they make the one-eyed, one-legged five-year-old do it? Because that's how feeding people looks like in the world right now. It is so so goddamn easy for us, and so goddamn hard for them, it's insane that we can't be bothered to do it.

Now, I called quite a few people fucking assholes during the course of this article. Actually, the vast majority of the US population. If you got offended by what I said, congratulations on being the dictionary definition of a first world problem. There are people in the world who wish that the worst thing that happened to them in a day was reading an article on the internet that made them angry, or their feelings got hurt, or somebody said that giving to their church is less efficient than giving to a real charity. Or maybe you're just pissed at me because I called you out on being selfish and/or dumb, or you're trying to think of ways that you can one-up any charity work I've done. You're a fucking asshole if that's what you care about and what you're still focusing on, but that's fine, because you're probably going to be stuck in that position until you die, funding a megachurch inside of feeding the poor, downloading ringtones instead of textbooks for children, and congratulating yourself on being a "good person" because, hey, it's not like you made the world be poor or anything. There's not really a point in addressing you, so, carry on, I guess.

If you're the other type of person, the type whose initial reaction wasn't "Oh, I'm childish? Well, you use a bunch of naughty words, so you're childish," or maybe you realized that you buy some things you don't really need and that money could have gone towards something worthwhile, well then hopefully you learned a little bit about assholes today and how not to act like them. I won't tell you exactly what to be, but you should know how not to be. Take that knowledge and do something with it.