Wednesday, April 11, 2012

sickness often, often attends me. I'm ruled by pain

I'm just about ready to re-enable the CAPTCHA system for the blog; as entertaining as the spam has been, it's also far past old (and believe me, for every piece I publish, I'm marking as spam and deleting ten other comments; it does add up). How'ver, I got an email from a Miss Heather Von St. James, who contacted me--pretty much out of the blue--and asked me to look over her blog. Actually, she asked me if she could have a guest post on my blog, and I turned her down for two reasons:
  1. I don't do guest posts.
  2. I can't conceive of a single thing someone on a cancer blog could say that applies to emergent game technology, internet memes, and steampunk music, unless they're also interested in those things. And she doesn't seem to share those interests.
But, I told her I'd look over her blog, and, if I felt it wasn't a consumer trap, I'd post it.

The problem with being nice and saying that is that I did a little bit of research and, while she herself sounds legitimate, the main site claims--in very tiny, very faded print at the bottom of the main page--that the entire thing classifies itself as "Attorney Advertising". Pair that with the fact that the Better Business Bureau lists no charity with their exact name on their national list.

So is she a scam artist? Maybe. I do know that mesothelioma itself is a very rare form of cancer. She seems sincere, and in this entry from 2011, she does mention the one mesothelioma charity organization that is listed by the Better Business Bureau, but the entire thing is making me twitchy, frankly.

I'm posting it because I said I would, but I don't have much faith in her or in this page not playing some angle at some point on the unsuspecting and the gullible. Which, really, is just part and parcel of the whole SLRFL wariness in general, unfortunately.

The leery mistrust of SLRFL can be laid purely on the shoulders of the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and their appalling mishandling of their Planned Parenthood grant. To appease political conservatives--stupid political conservatives, I might add--they very publically withdrew their financial support for Planned Parenthood. And--since the entire mission of Planned Parenthood has never been "abort every fetus" but "support womens' health in every way possible", the Foundation came out looking cold as ice, and unfeeling, and I wanted nothing to do with them ever again.

This attitude was not helped in the least by the discovery that the Komen group has been, for years now, litigating other charities to death for daring to use variants on "for the cure" or the traditional "breast cancer pink" color in their promotional materials.

Now, to be fair, on the side of RFL, they don't seem to have a visible connection to the Komen group, and I'm hoping that continues. But in the meanwhile, other than a few purchases now and again for fashions I really wanted, I've been sidestepping giving in world entirely this year, and just donating what little I have from my PayPal account. It's not much--I think, all in all, I've given about $15 total, considering our current financial situation is only a couple steps above dire--but I'd much rather contribute directly, than contribute in-world. I'm mostly choosing to back specific causes over the six-month extended Second Life Relay hoopla, which leaves me with momentary charities (like the project to save rare books of a known Caledonian) or yearly, smaller efforts (like Wear Grey).

Otherwise...I'm pretty much done with big, overfunded charity groups. Yeah, I know it's a knee-jerk reaction, but if the Komen Foundation--set up directly by a sister, to honor a fallen sister, in the first place--can now afford to spend more time in courtrooms protecting trademarks than actually supporting cancer research...I just don't have much faith that RFL isn't another overfunded, over-entitled group with the same agenda.

No comments: