Traditional Chinese virtue dictates that one should lend a hand when people are in need -- even if they are strangers -- and without expecting something in return. Charity is a kind of humanitarianism rather than a beneficial investment. So it is unreasonable for people involved in charities to impose conditions on the people they donate to. Indeed, scandals abound where donation funds are misused by some officials or siphoned off to sponsor their relatives. However, it is improper to sacrifice the interests of the honest majority to pay for the fraudulent few.
To ensure proper use of donation funds, the charity system must be made more transparent. More often than not, the things that the disadvantaged need most are sympathy and encouragement. So, to help them overcome life's difficulties, we are obliged to give them courage rather than impose stress or pressure.
September 28, 2007