MrBeast Sparks Criticism After Helping 1,000 Blind People See Again

MrBeast Sparks Criticism After Helping 1,000 Blind People See Again

Jimmy Donaldson, also known as MrBeast, has made a career out of documenting his good deeds on his YouTube to over 130 million subscribers. From giving people cars to donating extraordinary amounts of money to everyone from everyday people to influencers, he is on the extreme end of generosity on the platform. Donaldson took it to another level on January 28 when he posted a video about restoring the sight of over 1,000 blind people.

There are many different kinds of blindness, and some are treatable. According to a SEE International surgeon featured in the video, most sight-impaired people with cataracts only need a ten-minute surgery to be able to see again. Unfortunately, barriers such as finances and location prevent many people from getting the proper care they need. In partnership with the organization, Donaldson paid for a thousand people's surgeries, even offering some of them an extra $10,000 dollars.

However, the feel-good video also sparked a conversation about philanthropy on the internet, healthcare and more.

Some pointed out that Donaldson uses his charity to avoid paying taxes.

Twitch streamer Hasan Piker explained that the video fills him with "rage" because it highlights how most life-saving care is blocked by a "paywall" and it takes a YouTuber doing it for content to help people. In 2021, Donaldson reportedly made $54 million on the video platform alone.

And the ethics of filming a good deed has been brought up again as people still debate whether monetizing charitable acts or using them for views negates the impact of what was done.

Donaldson responded to the criticism on Twitter, confirming he has seen the intense conversation around his history-making act of kindness.

Some people came to the YouTuber's defense, making sure that his good deed didn't go unnoticed.

For what it's worth, Donaldson himself seems to agree that the government should step in.

For what it's worth, it shouldn't take a miraculous act of charity for people to access care. According to the nonprofit organization MyVision, the average cost of cataract surgery is $3,500 and $7,000 per eye. Insurance can help cover some of the cost depending on the plan, if the patient's deductible has been met and the condition that is causing the blindness. Certain eye conditions are not covered by insurance and sometimes even seemingly necessary procedures can be deemed cosmetic or unnecessary, leaving the patient to shoulder the high cost.

Below, watch MrBeast's original video.

Photo courtesy of Dave Kotinsky