Culture

Stop Using GoFundMe for Things That are Dumb, Please

Don’t buy Dave! (Reuters photo: Beck Diefenbach)
Grow up or shut up.

The fundraising website, GoFundMe, is intended to be a way for people to raise money for the causes that matter to them most.

Sometimes, the reasons are legitimate — such as people needing funds for lifesaving medical care or to rebuild their homes after they’ve been destroyed by natural disasters.

But sometimes, they’re not — and in fact, there are so many that are so ridiculous that I’m convinced the feeling of entitlement truly has replaced the concept of self-responsibility among my fellow humans.

Don’t believe me? Check it out:

1. Booze Money

There are a lot — a lot — of people asking for straight-up booze money.

For example, this dude — with a campaign titled “I honestly just want money” — is requesting $50 because, as he explains it, “I’m broke and I need some help. I want some booze and some gas money basically lol.”

He’s not alone. For example, this campaign, aptly titled “Booze/Drugs/Cigs,” was started by a dude who says he’s “Broke af and trynna have a lit summer.”

2. I booked the wrong plane ticket LOL

Some girl is having her wedding in India, but accidentally booked the wrong tickets for two of her best gal pals — because planning her wedding is just like soooooooo stressful.

So, now, it’s all of our problem:

“In all this chaos,  I accidentally booked the flights to India with the incorrect return date,” Meha Kaur writes.

Kaur explains that she now needs $1,200 to fix this mistake and encourages people to “Help spread the word!” because there is definitely no cause that deserves strangers’ philanthropy more than this, which definitely does not fall within the realm of “personal responsibility.” 

3. Buying Dave Grohl

A dude named Frank Pain is requesting $35,000 to “purchase Dave Grohl.” Yes, he really means buy Dave Grohl, as in buy the dude from Foo Fighters and Nirvana:

“I’m his biggest fan and figured I can round up enough scratch to purchase him so we can hang out and high five and s***,” he writes.

“If it is indeed illegal to purchase another human (or if Mr. Grohl isn’t a willing purchasee) then I’ll spend the money on beer because Dave seems like the kind of person that would want me to drink beer,” he continues.

Sound dumb? Maybe, but maybe not — this campaign has already raised nearly $2,000.

4. Burning Man

There are multiple campaigns for people asking for money to go to the hippie music festival Burning Man. For example, Matt and Thomas, who are asking for $4,000 (!) because they feel they “have been called to participate.”

My personal favorite, though, is this one from a girl named Karla, who requested — and received — $600 to go to Burning Man:

“I secured a Low-Income Ticket to Burning Man and will need assistance covering some of the other costs associated with getting to the Playa. . . . My gut says that this is possible. Despite my socio-economic background, despite being a first-generation Kenyan American, despite the obstacles I’ve had getting here.”

(That’s right — you are so oppressed that the rest of the world basically owes you Burning Man. Owes you it!)

“To have the opportunity to get more in touch with myself through this rich experience will have a spiritual impact on me that I can’t put into words. Emotional wellness is such an important part of my life. I view Burning Man as a way to recharge my battery and level up my abilities to help people be more aware of the impact of their emotional wellbeing.”

Oh — it is because you have to “help people.” Well, okay then. Here’s my entire bank account.

5. Yoga Teacher Training

There are also quite a few people on the site because they desperately need to become yoga teachers. After all, is there any profession that the world more desperately needs people to fill? Other than podcast hosts, probably not.

For example, check out this post:

“I am starting this campaign to help raise money for myself, so that I may start my journey into Yoga Teacher Training,” writes some guy named Brett, in a post for his campaign aptly titled “Get Brett to Yoga Teacher Training.”

But don’t worry — Brett’s not asking for $650 because he’s selfish. No, he needs the yoga teacher training because, as he puts it:

“This will provide me with the tools so that I can better serve each and every person in my life, and help guide them with positivity and light.”

Ah yes — “positivity and light.” Only $650! Okay.

6. A guy who says he “will die” if you don’t give him money for a treadmill

A dude named J Allen R Day needs a treadmill because he needs to run, and running in the winter is too dangerous.

He writes:

“My dear friends and family, I am cold and weary. I need a treadmill. My son needs me to have a treadmill. My girlfriend needs me to have a treadmill. My employer needs me to have a treadmill. Without a treadmill, I will die.”

7. People’s random album projects

GoFundMe is rife with people begging for money so they can make their music albums. One particularly ballsy dude, Pat Fraser, is requesting $80,000 for a combination of a new album and complete repayment of his student-loan debt.

Actually, I’m sorry. Just calling it “an album” isn’t doing it justice, because, as he explains it, what he’s actually trying to make is a “DOUBLE ALBUM” — (his use of caps, not mine):

“Yes, a double album, two discs, 12 tracks each, 24 tracks total.”

Yes, that is truly what suffering people need. Not more food, not more water, but more woke, crowd-funded double-albums. He really, truly gets it.

Now, Fraser explains that although the making of his “DOUBLE ALBUM” itself will only cost $10,000, it won’t be as good as the world needs it to be without the full $80,000 to pay off the debt, too:

“In order for me to really do music on a level needed to create the quality that people deserve, I need to remove this financial black cloud over my head,” he writes.

Glad to see he’s thinking of what “people deserve.”

8. A hair advertising video

Check out this woman, Ayana The Diva, who — on the same website where people are begging for funds to send a dying child to Disney World  – is asking for a whopping $2,000 to make her “very own advertising mini movie !!” for her “ #HairbyDIVA” campaign, which she never really explains but insists is “more than just a hashtag, it is a way of life.”

9. An $875 book cover

An author by the name of Danielle E. Shipley is asking for $875 for a new cover for her self-published book, which she describes as a “contemporary fantasy retelling of the Robin Hood legend, with some Arthuriana and Renaissance Faire fun thrown in.”

“Truthfully, at this stage, I’m investing far more in my career than it’s earning back,” Shipley writes.

Now, I always thought, investing and not earning seems like a pretty clear sign that it’s time to invest somewhere else. But I guess I’m wrong. These days, it just means it’s time to start begging for other people’s money because you’re just too gosh darn creative to be expected to work a boring job in an office like the people whose money you’re asking for do.

#share#

10. People’s random movie projects

When I was younger, I used to, like, totally want to make and be in movies. But then, instead, I grew up and understood that you’ve got to make money and survive.

A lot of grown people on this website really don’t seem to understand this point of view, though. For example, this person, who is begging for $5,000 to make some movie called “Karma, Circles Have No Corners,” which sounds so bad that I’d probably rather eat my own arm off than watch it.

11. $25,000 to train for and compete in the LPGA

Most of the people fighting for the funds to not die from a terminal illness are asking for less money than this lady, who wants $25,000 to achieve her childhood dream of competing in the LPGA tour.

“That will include my traveling expenses, tournament entry fees, and coaching/caddy fees,” Amira Alexander writes.

“To start my rod to the LPGA tour I will be competing at the first stage of LPGA Qualifying School (Mission Hills, California) during the last week in August. Making my way through each stage will allow different levels of competition,” she writes. “In making the second stage I will have Symetra Tour status, and when I finish in the top 25 at the third stage I will have full playing rights on the LPGA.”

Yeah, that’s right — she hasn’t even qualified. But she’s just so, so sure that she will that she has no problem asking for the full $25K now — what kind of arrogant, self-obsessed person does that? Oh, I don’t know, maybe the same kind of person who asks people to just give her $25,000 because she thinks she’s the only one with a childhood dream that matters.

12. Money for a girl’s sister’s gap year, even though ‘she does not know exactly’ what she needs it for yet

As a graduation present, some girl is asking for money to give to fund her little sister Abby’s gap year between high school and college — even though “she does not know where exactly she is going yet.”

(My best guess: Nowhere.)

13. Money for a lady who decided that she did not want to leave New York City after her vacation was over

Khadijat Yussuff “came to NYC from Pittsburgh for what was supposed to be a two-week visit, and decided to stay and ride the wave of opportunity for the next several months before returning to university studies” — and needs you to give her hundreds of dollars.

Yeah — money to help her “ride the wave!” Who doesn’t want to just chill and hang out? FYI, lady, there are lots of people out there who just would rather not have their vacations end, but they end them anyway. Why? Because they have to go work their jobs — and probably would rather spend that hard-earned money somewhere other than on you. (Fact check: I’m wrong . . . she has been given more than $400, way above her $350 goal.)

14. Money for a girl’s 25th birthday party, because it’s been “a crazy 24 years”

A girl named “Lindsay Diane” is asking for $500 to celebrate her 25th birthday at a music festival, insisting that she deserves it because it’s been “a crazy 24 years.”

“Self-care is a crucial and music is my therapy,” she writes.

What has been so crazy? Well, her cat died and she and her boyfriend have bills. Um, newsflash: That’s not crazy. That’s life, and definitely not a reason why you deserve $500 of other adults’ money, who, by the way, likely also have bills and have probably had a dead-pet experience at some point during their lives.

15. Random vacations

There are so many accounts that are just people who want to go on random vacations. Back in the day, people used to save for vacation. Now? They’re entitled to it.

For example, this one: “Trip to California !!” Christina Ong wants people to give her $2,000. Why? Because she’s “always wanted to visit California and eventually live there someday.”

“I know the amount seems excessive, but I’m hoping to stay for a week during the winter and this will cover the costs of mostly my living situation and food,” she writes.

(Key word: “Mostly.” Because, unless you are planning on staying in a 5-star hotel and consuming only lobster, you could probably do this trip for a lot less than $2,000.)

16. A gaming system for your buddy

This one is great. It’s from some dude named Aaron who needs $349 to buy his buddy, Nick, a PS4 because he and the rest of the boys play PS4 and Nick needs one, too.

“Being spread out across the country leaves us with one guys [sic] trip a year, a daily group chat, and hours of PS4 filled with laughs, cries, and yelling (mostly yelling). Unfortunately Nick does not have a PS4, and cannot participate in our male bonding time.”

Yikes, that sounds tough!

Oh, and, by the way — much like aggressive cancer — this situation is a race against time. After all, Aaron is expecting a baby:

“Unfortunately, we don’t have much time before I will have a little one in the house and my time will be even more limited,” he writes.

17. Big Move to LA!

Doniqua has decided to move to Los Angeles, and so needs $3,000 of your money.

“I promise I would not be asking if it wasn’t absolutely necessary,” she writes.

Yikes. “Necessary”? That sounds serious. What is it for? To take care of her dying father? To rescue her sister from kidnappers?

Nope:

“In my research of the entertainment industry I found that Los Angeles is the best location for me to be to launch my career.”

(1. It took you research to figure that out? 2. I think you need to look up what “absolutely necessary” means.)

18.  This nearly 1,000-word whine-fest from a girl who needs to go to her 52nd Phish show

So, this girl named Sarah Fankhouser really, really, really needs your money. She won tickets to a music festival featuring Phish, and, even though she has already seen Phish 51 times, and even though she already has the tickets free, she just really doesn’t have enough money to cover the rest and “all [she has] been doing all summer is dreaming about seeing all these wonderful music acts especially Ween and Phish doing a festival together.”

“Not to sound ungrateful but getting to see Phish again this summer means a lot to me,” she writes.

By the way, she’s definitely not “ungrateful,” because she really was being treated unfairly in terms of the how the specific free tickets that she won were not as inclusive as other people’s free tickets:

“The tickets do not come with a camping pass, like several other of the contests had included in their package.”

(AGHHHH!!!! THE INJUSTICE!!!!!)

By the way — much like having a dying newborn, her free-tickets situation has been causing her a serious amount of family stress:

“This wonderful blessing has been bestowed on us, but the stress surrounding coming up with the cash has created tension for my house the last couple days,” she writes.

Oh, and by the way, it’s not like she’s selfish. I know this for two reasons:

  1. At the end of her novel, she explains that she would “feel the worst, not about missing the shows, but wasting a gift that maybe someone else could have used.”

  2. She promises to give back: “I promise to bring posi loving vibrations to Lockn’, taking care of my body, mind and soul, so I can dance all weekend loooooong!!!!!”

I don’t know how people can go to this website, see people asking for money for their daughter’s life-threatening medical issues or their murdered brother’s unexpected funeral costs and post something begging for money for concert tickets — as if somehow they are the ones who are more important because they just, like, neeeeeeeeeeeeeeed to dance for “self-care.”

#related#I mean, honestly, what is happening to our culture? What is happening to values like self-respect and self-reliance? If you want a vacation, work for the money to take one. If you want to make your dreams come true, work to make them happen for yourself. If that dream still isn’t working out, then maybe you are just not that talented and should start thinking of a way you could actually contribute to society instead of a way to leech off of it.

It may be tough to hear, but you are not everyone else’s responsibility — and no one owes you anything. Grow up or, at the very least, shut up — because there are people out there with real problems who are likely sick of hearing you whine.  

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