A new trend in fund-raising isn’t going down well with Richard Swerdlow. Here’s his Perspective.
Do you have a minute to save the environment? How about two minutes for healthcare? Endangered species?
Every Bay Area resident knows the feeling; walking along a sidewalk when a question like this is tossed at you from a stranger holding a clipboard.
These young, hip clipboard-carrying canvassers wear bright t-shirts or vests with a logo of some charity. Part grass-roots volunteer, part TV huckster selling slice-and-dice cooking gadgets, they block every passerby with a crazed smile, a wave, and a question. If they trap you, you’re asked to sign up for a monthly donation.
“Chuggers" -- slang for charity muggers -- have become so prevalent in some neighborhoods, everybody has an escape plan. Pretend to get a phone call, look confused and gesture you don't speak English, look mean and keep walking.