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Opinion/About change – Charity can drive change

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By Todd Cohen

Two years after 9/11, America still is hurting.

At home, the economy limps, taxpayers are as self-absorbed as ever and politicians pander to voters with tax cuts that gut-punch social services.

And for all his talk about compassion and the critical role charity and volunteerism play, President Bush has limited his embrace to religious charity, chopped social spending, dumped AmeriCorps and let his administration bully charities that dare raise their voice.

Abroad, quick on the draw but slow in thinking ahead, Bush has mired America in a war with no end in sight.

In a world of terror and suffering, who is on watch?

Politicians watch polls. Businesses watch profits. Academics just watch.

That leaves charities to look out for the most vulnerable among us, and find ways to mend and change what is wrong.

Charities have enough to do to make ends meet and serve customers.

But in a world more at risk each day, charities must dig deeper, grow stronger and take on critical social issues.

True leaders know change means risk, sacrifice, teamwork and compromise to define a vision and make it work.

By joining hands to take action on the big issues we face, charities can lead with true compassion.

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