When you have been mongering long enough you have heard and seen everything at least once. Not much shocks you or bothers you anymore. I listen and respond to these situations with my practical indifference. It’s a survival tactic when I travel which is why I call it practical indifference. It’s not that I am unsympathetic but without validation and considering the people and the venues you often interact with those while you monger, you approach everything with a skeptical nature. It’s why I call it practical indifference.
Its with indifference that I approach most situations anymore. When you hear about the various disease and life saving operations that are available provided enough money can be found. The story from the hustler that swears that he is just begging for baby formula while decked out in the latest fashion trends. The beggar with the melted off face being hustled around by a handler begging for money. The small children running around selling small items at 2 AM in the morning. You name it I have seen it or heard it at least once.
The only way to separate yourself from these situations is be indifferent to it. You can’t get involved because its not going to do any good. The reality is that these people are apart of the system that we are equally involved in. They would not be there without making some sort of money. You can’t change anything by throwing more money at them. It may alleviate your immediate guilt but it doesn’t solve the bigger problem.
I point out to newer mongers on the scene as as well that things aren’t always what they appear. That beggar is a profession. That girl has used the scam for years. The kid selling crap isn’t keeping the profits, it goes to his/her handler. The guy begging for formula is going to use it for drugs and so on. While the human tragedy is there you have no choice but to treat it with indifference. It’s nothing more than background noise and scenery to a greater drama being played around you. Getting involved may lead you into a deeper hole then you may ever be able to dig your way out of.
The tradeoff is you do lose a bit of your humanity in the process. The ability to ignore the suffering around you means you become immune to it. I get asked about some of the stuff I have seen in my travels by my non-monger friends and they are shocked and horrified that I can walk past a mother with a child in her arms without giving her anything. Trying to explain the reality that she’s a professional and the kid isn’t hers is lost on them. They don’t believe that its possible. They haven’t traveled beyond a cruise to a private island. They still think by the rules of their native land.
Your life. Your choice on how your approach it. You can’t save everyone and you can’t fix everything. You learn that; and its a bitter truth and while it always feels good to do your small act of charity, realize you might not be doing much more than enabling someone else. Treat everything with a high degree os skepticism and with indifference.