TIME magazine just announced (along with a slew of other listy things) their list of “Top 10 Celebrity Do-Gooders.” (Bono, Kevin Costner, Jerry Lewis, Elton John, George Clooney, Brad Pitt & Angelinia Jolie, Paul Newman, Danny Thomas, Oprah Winfrey and Hayden Panettiere)
It’s solid, predictable, high profile – what you’d expect in a list like this–though I do take issue with the term “do-gooder,” which seems a bit disparaging and condescending. The term typically defines someone who, while doing good, is impractical or naive–Paul Newman is a “do-gooder” vs. an extremely charitable human being? Or Danny Thomas?
That aside, I wish the list bore a sub-head:
“Top 10 Celebrity Do-Gooders… that we know about”
See, there are many celebrities who quietly go about the business of charity, with no publicists or press in tow. In fact, with some of them, the rule is that nobody is to know about it, because they feel then that their image might get in the way of what they are trying to achieve. (I know one personally and the last thing she wants is attention.)
No to disparage anyone one the TIME list – I trust they do what they do because they feel it is right. But just a reminder as we stare into the glow of these high-wattage “do-gooders.” Every day, well-known people visit the troops, donate money, visit sick children–with the rule that it be kept private because they feel it is their private business and they want their work to be what matters–not the fact the fact that is *they* who are doing it.
Hats off to them, as well.