Don’t get me wrong – helping others just for the sake of helping others can be a very good thing. BUT (and isn’t there always one of those around somewhere?) the obsession – yes, obsession – with ‘volunteerism’ is really a different matter entirely.
Helping others doesn’t need to have ‘ism’ attached to it unless it has become politicized, as it very clearly now has. Notice what Trout says about the reason for ‘doing’ volunteerism: you do it for a sense of well-being. So in the worldview of ‘volunteerism’ you help people so you can get something, it’s just that the something is not money.
It would be horrible to get money for something, wouldn’t it? As the Bible clearly says, money is the root of all evil – no, wait, it doesn’t say that.
Many of those who promote the cult of ‘volunteerism’ today are politicians and media personalities (and keep in mind how those two categories often overlap). How many politicians serve in office for no pay, but only for ‘a sense of well-being’? How many movie stars and TV talking heads do what they do simply ‘for a sense of well-being’?
Helping people who truly need help just because they need help: good.
‘Volunteerism’: stupid, politically-correct idiocy often promoted by self-serving hypocrites.