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Causes Celebre - Walking on the Edge
I don't really have a plan...
foresthouse
foresthouse
Causes Celebre
I was just thinking about this and got curious - I know some of my favorite celebrities give their time and/or money to charitable causes (Terry Pratchett - Alzheimer's; Matthew Good - Amnesty International, more recently the Babz Chula foundation; Neil Gaiman - Comic Book Legal Defense Fund), and started wondering which other celebs give to which causes, and for what reasons (i.e. Terry's recent diagnosis with Alzheimer's brought home to him the drastic underfunding of the disease in the UK; Matt's been a long-time human rights advocate; Neil is concerned with comic books having the same First Amendment rights as novels, etc.).

I found a couple of websites that kind of show some of this:

A few causes listed on Give Spot

Celebrities for Awareness

but not really a comprehensive list.

I also found some articles on whether celebrity giving is a positive or negative, or both:

CNN discusses it

Suite101.com

Associated Content's take

So, question: What do your favorite celebs support, if anything? Why did they decide to do it? What do they do or give? Any other thoughts on this? (Or any other websites that highlight celebrity giving?)

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Trixie feels: curious curious

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Comments
pathology_doc From: pathology_doc Date: April 11th, 2008 03:18 pm (UTC) (current file)
I think that if a celebrity backs a cause, they should do so quietly, much in the way that JK Rowling backs Comic Relief - everyone knows that "Fantastic Beasts and How to Find Them" and "Quidditch through the Ages" are written by her and not Newt Scamander or Kenilworthy Whisp, and that the profits from these (and the concordance, when it's eventually published) go to charity, but she's not big-noting herself every minute of the day, yowling to the Press about her latest cause celebre.
foresthouse From: foresthouse Date: April 14th, 2008 07:30 pm (UTC) (current file)
I agree that celebs shouldn't make it all about them - on the other hand, if you're backing a cause, sometimes it helps (if you actually believe in it, which some celebs do) to talk publicly about it. I think there's definitely a line between making it all about you (the celeb) and using your status to make others aware of or care about a cause.
camella From: camella Date: April 11th, 2008 03:21 pm (UTC) (current file)
When I worked on Dennis Kucinich's presidential campaign, he seemed to be a charity case for many high-profile celebs who gave the maximum allowed donation to his campaign. Some of them even threw fundraising events for him to get all their rich friends to also give money to him. Craziness.

There is a website that lists what celebs give to what political campaigns, but i can't remember what it is.
foresthouse From: foresthouse Date: April 14th, 2008 07:30 pm (UTC) (current file)
Haha, a charity case. That thought amuses me so much. Aw.
dachelle From: dachelle Date: April 12th, 2008 10:20 pm (UTC) (current file)
Peter and Carl have both been longtime supporters of the Love Music Hate Racism campaign in the U.K., which works to fight the British National Party. I'm not quite sure how they got involved - I know one of the organizers is friends with them from way back, so I think she probably asked them to help. They played LMHR shows when they were the Libs, and both Babyshambles and Dirty Pretty Things have helped with the campaign through contributing songs to CDs, speaking at campaign events, and playing LMHR shows. Drew McConnell from Babyshambles is actually probably the biggest supporter of LMHR now, though - he helped spearhead the LMHR CD giveaway with the NME last year, and I know he's helped get acts for the Carnival I'm going to in London in two weeks.

Carl and DPT also support the Make Roads Safe campaign. They got involved with that after some girls were killed in a car accident leaving a DPT show. There's information about the campaign on their website and Anthony from DPT spoke about it on a British news show last year.
foresthouse From: foresthouse Date: April 14th, 2008 07:31 pm (UTC) (current file)
I think stuff like that is the good part of what celebs can do - particularly the second one, where it's clear they aren't just doing it so that they have some cause, but that they are doing it because it affected their lives somehow.
sapphires13 From: sapphires13 Date: April 13th, 2008 05:02 am (UTC) (current file)
Bono loves Africa =P As I'm sure you know.

The backstory started with Band Aid and Live Aid in the mid 80s, then after that he and his wife spent about five weeks volunteering at an orphanage in Ethiopia, which got him hooked. When Bob Geldof and co. came up with Drop the Debt in the late 90s, he go redrawn in, and has been going strong with it ever since.

I think... as far as celeb-charity goes, they should be sincere about it. Everyone cares about causes and cancer and all that, and those that can afford to give (the rich and powerful) should by all means do it... it's just that some of them seem to use it for attention/publicity. They organize and attend charitable events, and look teary eyed at the camera when they say how important it is... and then you never hear them say anything about it again.
foresthouse From: foresthouse Date: April 14th, 2008 07:32 pm (UTC) (current file)
That's very cool.

Yeah, I agree 100%. Insincerity bugs me. It's funny, I know a lot of them have causes, but I think I am more aware of the ones who actually, sincerely care about the causes. Maybe we can just sense when that is the case. heh.
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