Jeff Bezos, Cancel Culture, and Charitable Giving in America

What is philanthropy’s equivalent of cancel culture? Roundtable Senior Executive Fellow Howard Husock explores the question in a FOXBusiness op-ed published Jan. 13The risk is a serious one: philanthropy has historically supported unpopular or unknown ideas that turn out to be important. If the new generation of American philanthropists is constrained by fear, we may never know what we’re missing out on.

Read an excerpt below, or see the full article here.

“Amazon’s Jeff Bezos has been criticized in the past for not giving enough to charitable causes, despite being one of the world’s richest persons.

“His recent $10 billion gift to establish a fund to combat climate change was the largest charitable contribution made in 2020, and it may or may not start to defuse such complaints. But one thing it will almost certainly not do: attract criticism for its goal.

“Climate change, like social justice or reducing income inequality, is not a lightning rod for liberal critics.

“It may well be that Bezos cares deeply about climate trends—but it’s worth noting that this is not the only major recent philanthropic gift that aligns with progressive thought. Bezos and others have the right to support whatever charitable cause they wish to invest in. But let’s hope that they are not feeling pressure to back ideas that will help them avoid controversy—this would be philanthropy’s equivalent of cancel culture.”

Read the rest here.

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