We were stumbling around the internet today (using a website dedicated to the aforementioned verb), when we found an article on the NPR website titled A Victim Treats His Mugger Right.
The article basically detailed a man getting mugged at knifepoint on an abandoned subway platform, and as the thief (described as a teen) was walking away, the victim offers him his coat, saying that if he is going to be robbing people the rest of the night, he ought to be warm doing it.
At this point, it is a hilariously sarcastic gesture. At least, to those of us not so altruistically-inclined. The problem, though, is the man is serious. And not only does he give the kid his coat, he takes him out to dinner and tips him twenty dollars.
Talk about throwing fliff around! He was basically screaming at the kid “I am so rich that you can have my coat and wallet and I will still make you feel inferior to me.”
The rest of the article is dedicated to giving the good Samaritan’s ego a nice little hand job. There is even a quote from his mother explaining how nice and giving the man is. Come on! Spare us the Mother Theresa garbage, please!
Yes, people should be nice to each other. But if they are being altruistic, there shouldn’t be a nationally-published article about them. That creates reward which really, in effect, negates altruism and creates a cause and effect relationship with the reward extending beyond the act itself. In other words, keep it to yourself, you rich, attention-starved doofus!