My Prerogative

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Queen Elizabeth I had it right some 450 years ago when she said “I would not open windows into men’s souls.” We all have opinions and we have a right to them — even if they are stupid, destructive and wrong. I think most of agree on that. Where we diverge is when our opinions move to actions that impinge on other people. That happens all the time in society. Much of politics is about building enough political power to be able to take our opinions and move them into actions that impinge on others whether it’s trying to prevent others from marrying whom they love or blocking companies from polluting our groundwater – it is about making our opinions trump those of others.

But there are places where moving from thought to action has no place. The particular circumstance I am thinking of is the effort people make to discourage others from giving to or supporting community efforts to help others in Second Life®.  We all may have opinions about the relative merits of one fundraiser over another and we certainly should make no effort to support anything we disagree with. We might think this person is not doing enough to help herself or that person’s need is frivolous or distrust the circumstances or even doubt there is a real need. That’s fine. Skepticism is a healthy quality to have.

However, there is no Selective Service Administration drafting designers and ordering them to produce for this tour. Shoppers are not herded into venues to spend money against their will. Moreover, if you are a shopper and buy a pair of shoes for 250L at a fundraiser, you get a pair of shoes that would cost 250L or more at the store since designers often discount for fundraisers.  You’re not donating, you’re shopping. You might spend a little more because you think it’s for a good cause, but you get a fair return for your money.You lose nothing. The only people who risk are the creators and if they have made the decision to contribute, that’s their prerogative.

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There are a couple of fundraisers right now to help individuals with urgent family needs. The hair, dress, shoes, mani/pedi and necklace in today’s outfit come from one of those events, <3Ulaa.  <3Ulaa is raising funds to help Ulaa Coronet to take her son to meet his grandmother for the first and final time. His grandmother is dying of cancer. For me, this is a compelling need and one that I think is worthy of my time and my lindens – and that’s my prerogative. If you don’t agree, don’t shop there. You will miss out on all sorts of adorability, but that’s your prerogative 

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I am agitated about this because there has been far too much judgment and ill will associated with these events – every one of them. When I organized Love Donna Flora, I had the painful obligation of asking Squinternet to send me her medical reports to upload to the web site because I knew some ghouls would allege she was faking her cancer – and sure enough, that happened. Thankfully, Squinternet understood the need and made it easy for me, but damn, I hated to ask her.

In this particular circumstance, some people seem to think Ulaa and her son should hop the rails, camp out in a ravine, and boil ramen over a campfire instead of flying and staying at a hotel. Personally, I hope enough funds are raised so that Ulaa can not only take her son to visit and get to know his grandmother, but that the three of them can go to Disneyland and on other outings and have the time of their lives – days filled with fun and laughter that will warm their hearts when Ulaa’s mother dies and they have only memories to keep them warm.

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People have made a decision to help her visit her mother and introduce her son to his grandmother before she passes. That’s their prerogative. I have chosen to shop there and blog some of the items and that’s my prerogative. Now, it’s your right to disagree. But if you disagree, why make secrets and gossip and complain? It’s no skin off your nose. No one is making you shop there. So really, you’re just being an ass. And, or course, that’s your prerogative

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Everybody’s talking all this stuff about me
Why don’t they just let me live?
I don’t need permission, make my own decisions
That’s my prerogative…

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this post has 9 plurk responses, click here to plurk page[+][-]
最近的 plurk 回應:
FudgePreach
Nimilas usual, very well said.
Hybie
Ketsywell stated as always, your Lindens, your choice... end of story.
CultBrat(applause)
NotTrubble(heart)
NotTrubbleawesome post. really well put. not sure if its my drama filter but I haven't heard any gossip or drama. In fact the whole event has awed me with the kindness of strangers. Thanks for blogging it xxx
Rainey100% A+
NatalieWell said! Bloody love you for saying it too xxx

3 thoughts on “My Prerogative

  1. Quan Lavender

    I get your point, but I think that is not the reason why many feel uncomfortable with this kind of fund raising. And I don’t need to talk behind anyone’s back. I post it here to be discussed.

    Those people who get help here, have at least a nice computer, internet connection, a home and for sure they don’t starve. That is not my picture of someone who needs funds.

    My money is tight too and my mother AND father are sick and live far away. When I pack it into a heartbreaking story, which I easily could, will you organize a fund raising for me? I really could need it as many, many others in SL too!

    At the end it looks to me as always those are getting help which are yelling the loudest and are able to expose drama. I could tell about many people, especially artists, who contibute a lot to the SL community with their works. They rarely log in because they can’t afford a proper computer to run the SL viewer. I lost friends because they where not able anymore to afford the internet costs. Whiskey Monday’s Blog has been widely appeciated and she almost daily wrote about the personal and financial problems she was facing. Did anyone come to raise funds? Now she is gone. And I even have a friend who left SL because he became homeless. Did he yell for help? No! He apologized for any inconvenience caused!

    What annoys me is that the humble people, the people with a rest of pride and style are usually overseen. When I raise funds, then for really poor, starving people!

  2. Sash Arabello

    Thank you for this, this is so true. I am so tired of people putting causes down, and saying that they won’t shop here or there, or give their lindens to a fundraiser. Really, you’re not missing out on anything, we all chose to work hard in order to give the consumer something, and the money we make goes to them. Simple as that. I dont’ see what the difference is between a normal event, and a fundraiser in sl on the consumer side. You just shop. I’m just thinking next time there’s a fundraiser, just organize the designers together, don’t say it’s a fundraiser, and then the designer gives their sales to the cause, or a portion of it, whatever, because this stupid fight is just ridiculous. I’m tired of the stupid messages. Thank you for posting this. It’s okay to not want to contribute to a cause, but to put it down and insult, it just comes off as if you’re jealous no one is doing this for you.

  3. Cajsa Lilliehook Post author

    You are right that there are more urgent and dire needs. There always are. However, I think the idea that we can’t help with one problem because there are worse problems is a recipe for inaction. There are always worse problems.

    And of course, you are right, the squeaky wheel gets the grease. Kesseret Steeplechase, a generous and giving woman, has often thought about organizing a fundraising program in Second Life to create a fund for emergency help that people could apply to directly, without a fundraiser for them. She thought recruiting a bunch of different people to help evaluate the need and have sort of a contingency fund to help folks in an emergency would be a great idea. I think it is a great idea, too, since folks could ask without asking in public where the chorus of criticism might discourage them. There are logistical problems for this and I don’t know if there’s an answer, but yes, it would be great if folks who needed help could get it.

    And of course, the need is always greater than the resources. However, doing a fundraiser for one person does not take away the ability to do a fundraiser for another. I would be willing to bet that if Whiskey Monday had signaled in any way that she would love some help – there would have been help. The SL community has proven its generosity time and time again. Not everyone wants help who could use it.

    Anyway, the entire focus of this post was supporting your right to not support this event – while stepping back and let those who do support it do it without shaming Ulaa for being poor and needful.

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