I’m writing to you as a concerned citizen. I’m concerned for future generations and the legacy we are all leaving for them. I’m sure to some this will seem obvious. My hope is to appeal to those who do not see it that way.
I realize from a corporate standpoint one needs to consider shareholders and profit margins, but to what end? What is enough? When will the shareholders feel confident enough that their investment is secure and that they can finally rest assured; $10 a share, $20, $100?
If we’re making decisions based solely on profit margin then the decisions we make will not support the well-being of the people who purchase those products and services, including you, your friends and family. I’m sure this fact has not been lost on you. I know for sure no amount of money will make you or any shareholder feel whole and happy inside. I know that deep down you know you are not exempt from the effects of all of these bad decisions any more than anybody else.
I am a mother who took a drug that was prescribed to me while I was pregnant and this particular drug company knew it was dangerous for babies in utero, and yet they made the decision to side with profit over the health of my son and so many other children. At 11 years old my son had to have open-heart surgery. There is no reason in the world that should have happened. I’m am curious to know, if that company had taken a vote with the shareholders and asked them if they would rather make an additional $5.00 per share or save the lives of children, what the outcome of that vote would be.
How about showing our children that honesty and integrity are the most important traits to cultivate. How about teaching them that the dollar isn’t the end all, because it isn’t. In fact, some corporations actually do set a good example and they are wildly successful! Look at Starbucks and Chipotle, they don’t compromise on standards or the well-being of humanity, and with little exception their stock prices have risen consistently over time. They are doing quite well for the shareholders, and I’ll bet they sleep very well at night.
How about showing future generations that they matter, they are our future after all, and they will be making big decisions on our behalf as we age. The younger generation is acutely aware that big business and politics don’t consider their education a priority, for instance. The decrease in funding and opportunities in schools is a clear indication that cannot be ignored. This fact is only heightened by the extraordinarily out-of-proportion defense budget that skyrockets as the education budget plummets. How can we expect our children to compete in this world and live to their highest potential when their opportunities are being depleted? There is no good reason for this. We cannot expect our children to respect us when we aren’t making decisions to their benefit, making them a priority.
To make matters worse, if you have ever spent time with a typical young adult from the inner city, you know the insurmountable odds they have to overcome to be successful. Education and nutrition, though, are two simple ways to afford these kids with an even playing field. We wish for less crime, a more civilized inner city, and yet we do not do the very things that would allow for it to happen; enthusiastically educate all of our children and provide them with the nutrition they need to be healthy and strong.
So, why is it that big business as a whole cannot seem to get on board with socially conscious business practices? How much profit is enough; $5 million, $10 million, $10 billion? And how do you sleep at night knowing the decisions you’re making are negatively impacting not only us, but you, your friends and family? If I had to guess I would bet you’re not sleeping well at all, and yes I’m talking to you. GMO’s aren’t only in my food, they are in yours too. Not only my friends and family are taking pharmaceuticals made by your companies, I’m guessing you are too – maybe ulcer medications, anti-anxiety medications, sleep aids??
You have to see the path you are creating for our children. People are far less healthy despite all of our medical advancements, and so many people are getting cancer. I recently had breast cancer, and I am an otherwise very healthy, clean living person. I went to an all-day meeting at the hospital that they have for new patients every Monday, and every Monday there is 10-15 new people diagnosed with breast cancer just in this one hospital! That’s outrageous. Daily decisions being made by big business and politicians are, without a doubt, significantly effecting our health and well-being. You cannot bury your head in the sand forever. One day it is going to affect you and or somebody you love. It’s not too late to turn things around.
So, how about working on creating good healthy foods for us all to eat, or drugs that actually make us healthier so we don’t get sick? How about instead of spending enormous amounts of money lobbying against things that are for the greater good of humanity (ex. GMO labeling) in order to create more profit for yourselves and the shareholders, you spend that money on making people healthier? How is this not an obvious course of action in light of the crisis our world is facing?
Our world is in crisis because of bad decisions made by people in power. I am begging you to consider being somebody who makes a difference in this world, but a positive one. Do things differently! Go against the grain! Be a leader our future generations can look up to and emulate! You have a choice every day in every decision you make.
Do you really want to leave a legacy of destruction? I can’t imagine you want your children to one day know the negative impact you had on the world. Or how about your grandchildren? Remember, the food you are producing and the decisions you’re making about pharmaceuticals are no safer for your family to take then they are for anybody else? And one day a doctor may tell them they need to take something and tell them that it is perfectly safe. Are you going to tell them it isn’t and that “you had to make the shareholders happy so you marketed that drug anyways, and you hope they understand” while you sit with them in the hospital during their cancer treatments or heart surgery?
So what’s it going to be? Are you going to leave this world a better place or are you going to be bullied by the propaganda that shareholders care more about the bottom line than the great good? Are you going to be a leader you and your family can be proud of or are you going to live in fear propagating more fear for a living? You can be an ass kicking leader, you just have to be brave and do the right thing!
I’m here if you need me.