From memory, I’ve never quoted Pamela Anderson before, so this is a new experience for me. Not as special as I thought it would be.
Anyway, at a recent rainforest charity reception at the House of Lords she said:
Sometimes I wonder if I am making it worse, or making it better…Am I legitimising these causes? Or the opposite? Who knows?
Well, luckily for you, the UK Public Opinion Monitor carried out a survey asking that very question, and it turns out that:
50 per cent of respondents indicated they take no notice of the message presented when celebrities promote charities and organisations and 14 per cent were put off their message.
…At the same time, 55 per cent felt that others pay more attention to such campaigns than they do themselves.
So it would turn out that when you’re watching Children in Need or whatever, and you think ‘if these celebrities genuinely supported this surely they’d give a whole bunch of cash, but I’m sure someone else will give instead of me,’ you’re pretty much thinking the same as most other people watching.
What was more interesting for me to find out, however, is that there are actually awards for celebrities who make a big difference in charity work – A Good Thing, you might say. Of course Angelina Jolie’s won five gongs.
But do the actual charity workers get anything like that? Of course not.
I wonder. In our celebrity-saturated post-modern culture, how do we balance the ethical issues of capitalism, not-for-profit charities, sports stars earning more in a week than many will earn in a decade, with simply ‘how much should I give’?