All I want for Christmas is a soapbox.

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

Hm… I keep meaning to do some revamping on this website so I can show these comics a little larger. In the meantime, click the below image to view in full. Or just squint into your monocle.

This isn’t some original idea I had, it’s inspired by Advent Conspiracy, which you may or may not have already heard about, but I think it’s revolutionary in all the right ways. I’m not trying to push my “hippie beliefs” on anyone, but I figure as long as I have a modest audience I might as well say my piece. Or is it peace? Peace on earth, anyway, and goodwill toward men. I don’t recall the angels shouting praises to hot holiday bargains, but maybe I just missed that part. I’m NOT trying to sound superior here, I think gift-giving is an important part of the celebration! But suppose you DID want to give some of that holiday spending money to those in need, and you had no idea where to start, you can browse non-profits by keyword/name and state at Network For Good or ask around at your church or community. If your church is participating in Advent Conspiracy they might already have an organization they’re working with.

One organization I’ve been impressed by is Lahash International, a grassroots agency based in Portland that is working with East African communities to provide care and advocacy for the most vulnerable. I had the chance to illustrate the cover of their latest newsletter, too, which I’ll post here soon.

Also, there seems to be rising awareness for the need for clean drinking water in developing nations. There are probably a number of organizations that are working to build wells for these people, but I recently heard a very compelling presentation by charity:water so I’ll direct you there. This is a particularly gratifying charity experience because 100% of your donations go directly into the well-building costs (all administrative costs are raised by private donors). Not that charity is about OUR experience, but if it encourages one extra donation then it’s worth pointing out.

Alright, I’m done with the Advent rant. I really hope this doesn’t come off as some arrogant tirade about the evils of consumerist Christmas. I’ve enjoyed many a Christmas morning spent tearing through gift wrap, and still understand the meaning behind it. Rather, I just want to share my conviction, that maybe some adjustment needs to be made, away from the material and toward the relationships, between friends and family, between those who have and those in need, and between us and our creator. That is all. Happy Advent 🙂