I saw this article in the WSJ today and feel compelled to comment.
A long-time nanny to a family with a SAHM finds herself out of work because the family is cutting back on expenses. The daughter is so distraught that the family sought medical attention for her. The doctor’s advice? Continue relations with the nanny.
The nanny, meanwhile, wrings her hands over her inability to purchase shoes for her teenage children.
What does the mom do? Willingly state to the WSJ that she just cannot do without her Botox treatments.
I believe those of us with funds to spend in this difficult economic climate have an obligation to spend, and to spend with a conscience. We must choose wisely. I would cut my shoe budget before throwing my housekeeper to the street – not because I care so much about a clean house, but because she is a person trying to provide for her family and in this economy it would prove difficult for her to replace the income.
My hope is that people thinking about cutting expenses value people more than HBO and Showtime, Tiffany jewelry, or fancy holiday parties. My hope is that people choose to write checks to food banks and shelters instead of taking advantage of great deals on new cars. (Although my father in law, who sells luxury automobiles, will be pretty upset with me for saying so and would argue that car manufacturers and automobile industry employees are as much in need of support as any other entity).
Choose to spend your money any way you like. I just ask you to actively engage in the choosing by making your choices thoughtfully. I vote my conscience with my dollars, and I hope you will also. It’s not about being perfect with our choices. It’s about being thoughtful with our choices.
How will you be thoughtful with your dollars this holiday season?