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BadWrong Giving and Notre Dame

Recently, I have seen a few posts on Facebook shaming people who donated towards rebuilding Notre Dame instead of contributing that money to other causes, such as cleaning up the garbage in the Pacific or rebuilding the black churches that were victims of arson.

While these are great causes to donate to, I find issue with the idea of shaming people who donated differently.

There is a misconception that needs to be clarified as well. Notre Dame is not owned by the Catholic church; it is owned by France.

Could France and the Catholic church foot the bill on their own? Probably. Yet that money would be diverted from elsewhere, possibly taking money from other charitable causes as well as potentially raising the taxes of the French people.

So here we have a case where individuals and organizations are donating of their own free will to save Notre Dame. It’s a piece of living history, dating back at least 800 years, predating the United States by centuries. The artifacts inside historical treasures.

Notre Dame is a treasure not just of France, but of the world. The fact that people are stepping up to keep this treasure alive is commendable.

Why does this have to be a “versus” situation? Like the little girl in the gif says, “Why can’t we have both?” There is no reason why we can’t fix Notre Dame and help other good causes too.

The Notre Dame fire has caused a spike in donations to the black churches in the St. Landry Parish, allowing the GoFundMe to reach its $1.8 million goal. So donating to one cause has helped another.

So rather than focusing on how we donated wrong, let’s instead celebrate that people gave of themselves to help others, whether it’s a worldwide treasure like Notre Dame, local community churches, or some other charitable cause. And if you think your cause needs some money, work on awareness to the causes that are important to you.