#931 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 27 Jul 2014.
Sydney’s Daily Telegraph called it “James Packer’s gift to Australia”: Crown Resorts and the Packer family have announced they will pump $200 million into Australian charities over the next ten years.
The National Philanthropic Fund will focus on Indigenous education, community welfare programs, and promotion of “artistic endeavours.”
Mr Packer said donations would be made to innovative, well-run charities and programs capable of “lasting social change.”
I applaud the move. Generous and thoughtful philanthropy is essential for a flourishing society, and has the capacity to strengthen the common good in ways that government funding can only partially deliver.
But the question remains: does the end justify the means? Is it good to fund even the most worthy charity from the proceeds of gambling? We will not all agree, but it is a question that any just society or conscientious citizen will always ask, hoping that goodness, beauty and truth will ultimately prevail.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.