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Why big corporations getting involved in politics could be disastrous to our society
One of the main arguments of the pro-choice and pro-same-sex marriage movements is that the government should stay out of the bedroom and doctor’s office. Men and women who gather in D.C. have no right to tell some other individual in another part of the country how they can or cannot live their life.
This is a broader outgrowth of the cultural concept that the personal and the political are separate. There are things that you do—what birth control you go on, who you sleep with, how many guns you want to own—that the government has no say on. Those would fall under one’s personal life. As that implies, there are things—what you can yell in a crowded theater or what you must wear in public—that affect the general public. These would be called the political.
Until the recent past the aim of the left and right, for different purposes, has been to keep these two categories separate. What one believes, practices and does in their spare time is of no consequence to the majority.
This is changing in America.
Over the month of April, the state of Georgia is going to see a loss of $100 million in revenue because the MLB decided to move its All-Star game and draft out of the state after it passed new voting laws. The law, deemed too harsh by the left and not harsh enough by those like former President Trump, created new regulations surrounding early voting, voter ID and ballot drop boxes. The main fear surrounding the law is that it will inevitably harm minority voters and disenfranchise their vote.
Without getting into more specifics of the law, MLB Commissioner Rob Manefred shared in his statement that the move was “the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport.”
This statement is interesting for a few reasons. Why does baseball have values that go beyond good sportsmanship and teamwork? What exactly are the political values of the MLB? Does the MLB not care about the half of the country that supported the new law? Most importantly, should companies be decrying legislation passed by elected officials?
It is important to emphasize that there is a difference between private businesses making business decisions and the government encouraging these decisions.
Of course, the MLB decision was not shocking as it was encouraged by the sitting president and later applauded by former President Obama.
What is important to note here is that this is not the first, or last, infiltration of politics into something as apolitical as rooting for the home team.
Just in the past few years, the left has written countless articles about canceling Beethoven for his “classism,” while the Republican leader in the White House attempted to cancel tires over a disputed MAGA ban.
In response to the aforementioned voting law in Georgia, actor Will Smith pulled the plug from his latest movie, which was set to film in the state. Delta and Coca-Cola were also among the companies to release statements on the highly criticized law, claiming that they do not support attempts to stifle voting.
This is the world America is slowly creating for itself. Businesses are forced to comment on every politically charged issue that may come up. Before buying a cup of coffee one must ensure that the chain supports the right candidates. Before watching sports one must ensure the commissioner has denounced the latest outrage.
This is what happens when society begins to care more about what Coca-Cola thinks of politics than they do about how much sugar is in their latest drink or what people think of their Santa-themed cans.
Where does this leave a nation that is already tearing at the seams because of political differences? What happens when silence is deemed violence and it is not enough to be passive?
Well, people fight back. The half of the country that did support the law in Georgia will start their own MLB. Though it is likely to go nowhere, there have been calls to remove the MLB antitrust exemption to provide room for a new baseball league in the market-space.
It is imperative that America stops demanding acceptance and promotion of all political positions from businesses and instead demands that they provide the best services possible.
Businesses and private corporations have every right to take any position they want, but they must be aware that for every political action they take, they ostracize half the country. This is no way to bring a nation back together.
There are few areas of American life that are going to be left untouched by the political. The country has pulled a full 180 from its founding ideals of keeping the personal and political separate. Instead, it is seeking to make every aspect political.
While it seems like a small positive that businesses support what you support, the implications of this issue are more severe than they seem. The effect of losing all personal aspects of life to politics represents the larger death of personal and individual freedoms.
Put aside the short-term benefits of getting companies to comply with morally positive standards and recognize the long-term effect of politicizing every aspect of American life. No one wins when the personal and the political occupy the same space.
Americans are a proud people with strong beliefs and convictions. They will hunker down into their sides and they will create businesses that explicitly support one party or another. People will find their sides and the economy may survive, but there is scant a chance the country will.