Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Charity Wednesday - Million Mustache March and America's Delightful Charity Diversity

I probably don't need to remind anyone about April's Million Mustache March.  I know, you've had it on your calendar for months.  The men in your life are probably carefully planning their facial hair growth so that their own mustache is just perfect for the event.

If you've been living under a rock and haven't a clue about what I'm talking about, click the link above for the details. Sponsored by the American Mustache Institute (AMI)*,  the Million Mustache March is an event in Washington DC designed to encourage our lawmakers to promote the growth of facial hair through tax breaks for the purchase of mustache-care products. Their reasoning?  According to AMI, men who grow facial hair earn more money than their clean-shaven counterparts - I'm not sure that's true for us ladies - so encouraging facial hair would, by extension, boost the national economy.

I get it. My own husband looks dashing with a nicely groomed beard and I'm sure it adds to his productivity at work.  And whether or not one agrees with AMI's logic, the fact that they are hosting this march in our nation's capital has to be appreciated.  That America, in all its amazing diversity, is a place where people can march for, of all things, facial hair, is amazing and wonderful.

On a slightly more serious note, our country's charitable sector is amazing in it's diversity, too.  Take three BBB Accredited charities:  Mothers Against Drunk Driving, American Bird Conservancy, and  Servicemembers Legal Defense Network. They all meet the BBB's high standards for governance, financial accountability, efficiency, and privacy protection, but each responds to a very different need.  America is a place where people can freely choose to put their money where their passion is and where causes as diverse as drunk driving awareness and the legal rights of service members have advocates that work for change.
As donors, we all have a right to know how a charity spends our money.  And we have a right to be picky about the recipients of our donations.  But being choosy and doing our homework doesn't limit our options.  So fight for incentives to encourage fashionable 'staches among your friends and family, if that's your thing.  Or donate money to preserve bird habitats, if that's your thing, but do so knowing that the BBB is here to help you make informed giving decisions - wherever your passions lie.

*American Mustache Institute is not a BBB Accredited Charity.  Truth is, we don't really know anything about them.  We can't even verify, beyond this Wikipedia entry, if they are, in fact, a charity. If promoting facial hair is a cause you feel strongly about, we encourage you to contact them and do your reasearch before donating.

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