I no longer bubble with rage when a new outbreak of corporate wokeness erupts across our fruited plain. It’s just another day in the pathetic life of the Land of the Greedy and the Home of the Enslaved. To wit: this week’s parade of U.S. companies ostentatiously trumpeting “health care coverage” for employees who want to travel to Planned Parenthood-beholden states to destroy the lives of their unborn babies in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade.
You know and I know that these firms aren’t leaping forward to shower “health” benefits (translation: fetal homicide subsidies) on workers out of compassion or principle. It’s not even about straightforward financial calculations. Yes, of course, covering workers’ quickie trips to eliminate inconvenient life is much cheaper than footing the bill for extended maternity leaves. But the bottom line is this: Corporate aborti-mania is driven by abject fear and quivering compliance with cultural authoritarianism.
The woke bullies of American capitalism (LOL) are not really bullies at all. They’re yellow-bellied pimpers of Chinese-made goods and globo-homogenized services who are captives—not captains—of the regime. They are mortified by boycotts and terrified by bad press (see what happened to Pepsi in January after abortifa targeted the company for its donation to the Texas GOP). So they surrender to the violence-threatening wrath of a miserably hideous minority of hysterical harridans online and on the ground.
The CEO of Dick’s Sporting Goods, Lauren Hobart, announced on her LinkedIn account that the company is “prepared to ensure that all of our teammates have consistent and safe access to the benefits we provide, regardless of the state in which they live.” That means forking over $4,000 per worker, spouse or dependent’s abortion. Outdoor clothing retailer Patagonia followed suit, with a press release filled with gooey rhetoric about “caring” for their employees’ “choices.” Again: LOL.
No one is fooled by Big Business leaders wrapping themselves in “My Body, My Choice” rhetoric. (Hello, Alaska Airlines, Google, Citigroup, Apple, Microsoft, JPMorgan, Columbia Sportswear, Nike, Adidas, Uber, Netflix, Disney, etc., etc., etc.) Everything is performative theater. Never forget: The companies who ruthlessly cracked down on maskless autistic toddlers and senior citizens on respirators—the same ones who threatened, punished and fired vaccine objectors en masse—are now preening loudly about their “culture of care,” “equity” and commitment to sacred health care “rights.” The corporate enforcers of COVID-19 tyranny are now the corporate enforcers of abortion-as-health-care extremism because that is what the Beltway swamp decrees and the TikTok mob demands.
The late dissident playwright and Czech president Vaclav Havel exposed the motivations of today’s woke banner-wavers in his “greengrocer” parable, detailed in his seminal 1978 essay, “The Power of the Powerless”: A shopkeeper places a sign in his grocery store window proclaiming, “Workers of the world, unite!”
“Why does he do it?” Havel asks. One answer: to avoid conflict. “If he were to refuse, there could be trouble. He could be reproached for not having the proper decoration in his window; someone might even accuse him of disloyalty. He does it because these things must be done if one is to get along in life.” It’s a signal of capitulation and conformity.
“I, the greengrocer XY, live here and I know what I must do. I behave in the manner expected of me. I can be depended upon and am beyond reproach. I am obedient and therefore I have the right to be left in peace,” Havel decoded the placard’s slogan. “This message, of course, has an addressee: it is directed above, to the greengrocer’s superior, and at the same time it is a shield that protects the greengrocer from potential informers” (or online snitches and outrage manufacturers in modern day).
Communist ideology, like today’s corporate woke ideology, “is a veil behind which human beings can hide their own fallen existence, their trivialization, and their adaptation to the status quo,” Havel declared. “It is an excuse that everyone can use, from the greengrocer, who conceals his fear of losing his job behind an alleged interest in the unification of the workers of the world, to the highest functionary, whose interest in staying in power can be cloaked in phrases about service to the working class.”
These corrupt American corporations and their comrades above and below have less might than either they or we think they do. Abortion is murder, not health care. 1+1 = 2. Ignorance is an abyss. If individual citizens conscientiously conduct the business of their own lives in truth, not trepidation, the power of the powerless cannot be suppressed.
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Image: Dick’s Sporting Goods, Plainville, CT (Mike Mozart / via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY 2.0)