Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Pay your dues, maggot!

I'm a big fan of Toastmasters (the public speaking club), but something happened recently that I wish to share:

Our club, which as far as I can tell has minimal operating expenses and is volunteer-run, has dues. $70 to join and $33 twice a year.

I'm sure they can easily provide documentation what these dues actually paid for (snacks, maybe PR or salaries) but to me this doesn't really matter. The explanation "Well it goes to the corporate office" really doesn't work with me - it makes me think of union dues and what a big waste that generally is.

Toastmasters is a professional club with a non-profity mission - help people be better speakers. All the local chapters are full of volunteers. And that's what bugs me. Since I think of it as a non-profit, I feel they should fundraise but not charge people for entry. After all, if *I* created a social club like this I couldn't imagine charging people for my salary... It's a do-gooder thing, right?

Dianna said I was just being cheap. She may be right. She asked if I'd be opposed to annual membership. I said no. So I guess I believed there is a difference between annual membership and seasonal dues, which is, of course, ridiculous.

So.... yeah, I'm gonna pay those dues.

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