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April 28, 2017 5:49 AM Age: 3 yrs

Shame isn’t what it used to be!

Category: Larry Checco, AC - Billboard, AC RSS, CG Commentary & Opinion, ERM Commentary & Opinion, Ethics Commentary & Opinion, ESG Highlights, ESG Highlighted Commentary
Source:  Larry Checco, featured commentator

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I’m old enough to remember when shame was a self-correcting emotion.  


When you did something shameful—like openly lie or were disrespectful to others—your family, friends or community would not hesitate to make you aware of your disgraceful act.  At the very least, they would expect an apology or some form of atonement.   And more often than not, to regain acceptance into the fold, with head down, you shamefully asked forgiveness. 


Well, we’ve come a long way, baby!  Today, shamelessness knows no bounds.


If you are found out to have said that because of your celebrity status you can grab women by their private parts, and instead of being shamed, we elect you President of the United States of America (a/k/a leader of the free world).


Post on the web a video of yourself having sex, and instead of being pilloried for shameful behavior, it sets you on a course to fame and fortune (think: Kim Kardashian or Paris Hilton).


You might fabricate your own “alternative facts” (think of a press secretary beefing up the size of those attending a presidential inauguration, or stating again and again that 3 million votes were cast illegally against his boss).  When these statements are exposed as untrue, instead of embracing the truth you double and triple down on your dissembling facts.


Harass numerous women in your employ over the course of years and instead of having to apologize or make amends, your company awards you tens of millions of dollars in severance (think:  Fox News’s Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly).


What’s even more shameful regarding the Fox News example is that 21st Century Fox, the corporate owner of Fox News, didn’t separate from its rainmaking, holier-than-thou, bullying and bloviating Bill O’Reilly because of his years of alleged sexual harassment.  


Au contraire, they finally let him go because keeping him would have meant a significant loss of advertising revenue from the likes of Mercedes-Benz, BMW and dozens of other high profile companies afraid of tarnishing their brands if they continued to support The O’Reilly Factor.  (More than 50 sponsors said adios!)


There’s a lesson to be learned here, folks.  It appears our dollars are worth far more than our votes or civic outrage.  And we ought to leverage that lesson.


I, for one, will no longer use Uber because of the shameful attics of its infantile president, Travis Kalanick, nor will I shop at Walmart Stores because of its shameful and degrading treatment of its employees.


Are you aware that Walmart actually informs its employees that if they can’t make ends meet on the salaries the company pays that they should take advantage of government programs like SNAP -- a/k/a the government's food stamp program. For shame!


That’s right.  We, the American taxpayers, are subsidizing the enormous wealth of the Walton family (major shareholders of Walmart).  If that doesn’t get your gall I’m afraid nothing will—and that is a shame.


So if the only effective cudgel we have against shameless behavior is our aggregate economic clout, let’s use it.


And hail to all the courageous women who came forth at their own peril to trigger this off.  They've helped us turn a corner, not only in outing these high profile sexual deviants, but also in regaining a semblance of civility in our society. 


If we don’t follow up their example with courageous actions of our own, then shame on us! 


Contents (c) Copyright 2017 by Larry Checco, All Rights Reserved



Published by: Corporate Governance & Accountability Advisors, Inc. Content & Concepts ©2008 by CG&AA, Inc. All rights reserved