The United Way realized that it had never received a donation from the city’s most successful lawyer. So a United Way volunteer paid the lawyer a visit in his lavish office.
The volunteer opened the meeting by saying, “Our research shows that even though your annual income is over two million dollars, you don’t give a penny to charity. Wouldn’t you like to give something back to your community through the United Way?”
The lawyer thought for a minute and said, “First, did your research also show you that my mother is dying after a long, painful illness and she has huge medical bills that are far beyond her ability to pay?”
Embarrassed, the United Way rep mumbled, “Uh… No, I didn’t know that.”
“Secondly,” said the lawyer, “did it show that my brother, a disabled veteran, is blind and confined to a wheelchair and is unable to support his wife and six children?”
The stricken United Way rep began to stammer an apology, but was cut off again.
“Thirdly, did your research also show you that my sister’s husband died in a dreadful car accident, leaving her penniless with a mortgage and three children, one of whom is disabled and another that has learning disabilities requiring an array of private tutors?”
The humiliated United Way rep, completely beaten, said, “I’m so sorry, I had no idea.”
And the lawyer went on, “So, if I didn’t give any money to them, what makes you think I’d give any to you?”