Corporations Repent So Kids Can Learn?

Mar 30, 2020 by

Corporations are people too!  There is a Leave it to Beaver ambiance in Board Rooms. Best kept secret. Worst joke.

Corporations are sentimental entities.  The problem lies in that they can’t quite believe in a higher power, and that’s understandable, considering the universe in which they dwell and largely define.

Who do they look up to?

We are being instructed to believe that corporations have “stepped up to the plate” during this era of coronavirus, put the “bottom line” in suspended animation until the pandemic abates, and asserted their “humanity” by re-tooling their factories to make protective gear and other products to fight the plague.

Numerous corporations have been cited as demonstrating  benevolence and exemplary patriotism by doing so.  Sometimes it requires some public shaming to budge them ( e.g.: General Motors)

I side neither with the “corporations are people” crowd nor with those ideologues who view them as inherently wicked for their adoration of profit.

It’s likely that some corporations are led by decent people who see the “big picture” of our common fate and have pivoted their holdings to display civic pragmatism.

No harm is done by playing along with the arguable misnomer “compassion” to describe it.

Stranger things have happened.

According to Chalkbeat, Spectrum and Optimum, will now allow K-12 students to access its free 60-day service so that they can participate in online distance learning. 

To do this, they rescinded their policy which had been to deny eligibility to any families whose payments were in arrears.  In effect, they were holding children’s education hostage until their account holders coughed up the lucre.

This mercy was a business decision, but at least justice was done.

The intransigence of corporations sometimes melts away ( only to re-freeze later), when their leaders perceive they may be alienating the authorities on whom their long-term prosperity depends.

They calculate the risks and may under duress act like good corporate citizens. The fact that they so “act” doesn’t equate with being “good actors”.

Ideally, right decisions would be made for the right reasons, but we don’t live in a perfect world. It’s a bit much to expect corporations or even individuals to act out of pure and pristine motives.

It ain’t gonna happen and it doesn’t work that way. To ensure its consistency would require a revised endowment from the Creator.

Assuming the Chalkbeat report is accurate, there is no need to rub Spectrum and Optimum’s corporate noses in their retreat from initial  greed. Maybe they genuinely saw the light and had a legitimate change of heart. If so, no humiliation attaches to their surrender.

What’s important is that children are not punished for the indigence or even delinquency of the account holder of the family’s invoices.  Pandemics are no excuse to diminish their invitation and equal opportunity for a quality education.

If corporations are going to do the right thing for the wrong reason, it may be the best we can hope for.  And demand. And enforce.

Ron Isaac

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