Jeff Bezos’ Ex-Wife MacKenzie Scott Is Being Praised For Donating A Ton Of Money, All While He Plans To Go To Space

Last week Jeff Bezos announced that he was going to step down as CEO of Amazon, the mega-corporation he created, earlier than expected. Why? In part because he wants to go to space. While the world’s richest person was using his imaginable wealth to nurse a childhood dream, his ex-wife was donating billions to organizations that seek to make the world a better place. And when news broke, people couldn’t help but point out which was the better half in the marriage.

As per The New York Times, MacKenzie Scott, formerly Bezos, along with her husband Dan Jewett, has decided to give $2.74 billion to organizations involving the arts and the fight against racial discrimination. Her divorce from the Amazon honcho in 2019 left her with $36 billion in company stock. Since then that number has ballooned to almost $60 billion, much of it during the pandemic, which saw the company — and Bezos’ already unimaginable wealth — grow far richer, all while many, including Amazon employees, suffered.

But unlike her ex-husband, Scott has no interest in hording her wealth, or spending it on things like space travel. She’s always promised to give her riches away “until the safe is empty.” Indeed, this isn’t the first time she’s tried to empty her purse. Over the last 11 months, she’s donated some $8 billion, mostly to nonprofits. Last year alone she gave $6 billion to 500 organizations. Among the 286 she’s donating to in this latest dump include the Alaska Native Heritage Center, Broward College in Florida, and Jazz at Lincoln Center. The average donation is around $10 million each.

Scott is operating differently than other charitable billionaires, such as Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates (the latter also soon to be an ex). She doesn’t have a foundation. Instead she gives money when she likes, writing about where she’s giving to and why on blog posts on Medium. These posts also include her ruminating about philanthropy, with her saying she wants “to de-emphasize privileged voices and cede focus to others.”

When news broke that at least someone whose wealth is tied to Amazon was trying to pay it forward, it was met with fulsome praise.

Others dwelled more on her considerably less philanthropic ex.

There were jokes.

And there were reminders that maybe waiting around for billionaires to do the right thing isn’t a solid game plan for making the world a better place.

While his ex-wife is being praised for being a good person, Bezos himself was being trolled with jokey petitions that called him out for what he’s done — and what he hasn’t, namely paying his fair share in taxes.

(Via NYT)