When I 'woke' I realized it wasn’t a nightmare: Corporate America had become a political party
Corporate America is flexing its political muscles.
In the name of 'voting rights,' its newly named Civic Alliance claims to have a handle on consumers and on their employees, declaring that it has a plan is to encourage every American to speak up, vote, and participate in the promise of a united future.
It claims a current membership list of 1,119 companies, and more than five million employees. This ‘nonpartisan’ alliance also has claimed to have historically defended our democracy, contrary to absurd act of one of their members, Major League Baseball, which pulled the MLB All-Star game out of the Peach State.
In retaliation to the state of Georgia's SB202, which expands voting rights in the state and closes the door to widespread election fraud, raising citizen confidence in elections, these self-claimed democracy seekers have taken action to stop it, by claiming that the bill has similarities to the Jim Crow laws of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, which encouraged segregation in the southern U.S. states.
The accusations are preposterous, and the brash reaction of MLB is only punishing the state’s economy and its residents. Needless to say, they protested without addressing the substance of the law.
In Georgia, state and tourism officials have estimated a loss of over $100 million.
Lest we forget, Georgia's hospitality industry has already taken a hit over the last year, according to Holly Quinlan, Chief Executive of Cobb Travel and Tourism. "The 8,000-plus MLB contracted hotel room nights that will not actualize as a result of the MLB All-Star Game relocation will have a negative impact on Cobb's hospitality industry and other local businesses, further delaying recovery,” she told CNN. The league’s decision is likely the first of many dominos to fall, said Atlanta mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. On the flip side, the players will get paid, regardless of where the game takes place, the MLB will acquire the same television revenue and the only ones hurt by the decision will be Atlanta’s economy, especially stadium staff and local vendors.
Despite the nonsense claims of African-American voting suppression or Jim Crow redux, the new voting bill simply strives to address the lack of voter confidence in elections while encouraging uniformity in the process. Not only does the bill address the universaity of voting rights, it also requires two Saturday voting days along with two non-mandatory Sundays. This extends the available voting schedule, something that has never been offered in more than one hundred Georgian counties. Democrats have expressed concerns over the requirement of identification in the law, somehow overlooking the obligation of the state to confirm voter identity and to all intents and purposes prevent a fraudulent result.
The nightmare continues with the recent weaponization of corporate America against traditional values, and Civic Alliance members moving into an economic sanction scenario, demonstrating that corporate America will do what it takes to bring their game of politics to a whole new level. Jut call them the Civic Alliance Party. On April 2, 21 the Civic Alliance released a pledge to members insinuating that lawmakers are imposing barriers to voting, resulting in longer lines at the polls and/or reducing access to secure ballot dropboxes. The alliance called upon elected leaders in every state capital and Congress to work across the aisle and ensure that every American has the freedom to cast their vote, a pledge that sounds like nothing less than a political party mission statement.
The pledge has received hundreds of corporate signatures, and despite the fact that Corporate America has engaged in public political debates for years, as a way of using the opportunity to emphasize their Corporate Social Responsibility, some should question whether the political partisanship and cultural tradition are mere objects of public relations hypocrisy or sincere ethics.
Think for yourself and decide.
Gary S. Goldman is the nationally recognized host of “Business, Politics, & Lifestyles” a weekly talk show airing on WCRN 830 in Metro Boston MA and throughout New England. He is the author of My Big Mouth and The Ugly Truth: Taking the Stress out of Opinions VS Fact.
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