A lot of you know I grew up in a church background and that many of the stories, images, and analogies I use connect to that world. I rarely intend to make use of those ideas, but sometimes they just fit. All my references are like oddly specific crayons sitting in a box collecting dust till the right moment arrives and then they add the perfect amount of detail. “Why yes, this tree does need a touch of Bathsheba Brown.” I don’t think I’m the only one who creates this way. Hell, the album I just had on – GKMC – is layered with similar references. Anyway, there’s a particular crayon I want to use today, one called ‘first fruits’. Without getting too deep into the weeds, we’ll just say it’s the idea that when you offer something, it’s more powerful when you give out of what you have, not out of what you have left over.
The Muse Collaborative recently closed its Amazon Smile account. If you’re not familiar with that program, it’s an Amazon initiative that lets you donate .5% (50¢ for every $100 spent) of your purchase to a nonprofit. We’ve also decided not to do any advertising for donations on “Giving Tuesday.” Our organization wouldn’t exist if the world already worked like we want it to. To make society better, to support artists and creativity fully, to give reverence to those who’ve always been brilliant but have been ignored because of their identity, we must do something new. We already know what sort of society we can build when our priorities after Thanksgiving are four or five days of sales followed by a day of giving. It’s the one we have.
No one is dumb for utilizing discounts. Nonprofits aren’t corrupt because they try to fundraise on a day marketed for giving. But if we want to drastically reshape the world we live in, it’s important to admit these pragmatic half-measures aren’t what get us there.
Giving is sacrifice.