May 29th, 2024

It is much better to give than to receive

By Letter to the Editor on December 22, 2021.

It’s Christmas season. It’s the time to be charitable and to give to those who need help.
It’s better to give than to receive. Humans by nature is proud. Dignity is more important than a full stomach.
Of course, we have to feed the hungry and clothe the naked. But it is far better to make them rich enough, no matter how little surplus is, to help them to have a pride in helping others?
When I was transferred to Switzerland in 1975, it was the beginning of the worldwide good-will and enthusiasm to help “Boat People” from Vietnam.
One day my 11-year-old daughter and I were standing at the entrance of a huge shopping plaza in Geneva called “Balexer” near the Cointrin Airport.
One kindly looking,well-dressed woman gave my daughter a bar of chocolate and said, “Pauvre refugie” (poor refugee) and patted her head.
My girl threw the chocolate on the floor in fury. “I’m not a refugee.” Was I embarrassed!
You notice how many former refugees start helping others as soon as they succeed in establishing new life.
 I don’t know how many of the readers have an experience of being on the receiving end of charity. I have.
In 1945, we were all hungry and had no change of clothes in Japan, like many Europeans were after the Second World War.
So I know it’s better to be able to give than to receive. 
Tadashi (Tad) Mitsui

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