So everyone has something bad to say about street thugs.
They are immoral. They sell drugs. They are bad to and for women.
But what about the white collar thugs? The thugs with Blackberrys, briefcases and tailored suits who sit behind $5,000 desks (that’s desks, the place where paper lays) in the corner offices of major corporations. Open your mind, and let’s break this down.
They are Immoral
At dictionary.com, immorality is defined as:
1. the quality of not being in accord with standards of right or good conduct.
2. immoral quality, character, or conduct; wickedness; evilness.
3. sexual misconduct.
Major corporations are full of white collar thugs. They are manipulative, talented at taking other people’s money, and always ready for a fight. Isn’t that a thug?
It is also a known fact that an inordinate number of corporate leaders are psychopaths who have absolutely no empathy or feeling for others. A study by Robert Hare, a professor emeritus at the University of British Columbia in Canada, showed that there are a lot more psychopathic personalities at large in managerial positions than we would think. According to Professor Hare, they break their promises to co-workers, take credit for other employees’ hard work and place the blame on any and everyone else when things go wrong at the place of business. “Psychopaths are social predators and like all predators they are looking for feeding grounds,” Hare says. “Wherever you get power, prestige and money, you will find them.”
Some even describe the corporation itself as a psychopath, because it, as a whole, is cold, calculating, and self-serving.
Finally, corporations are also hot spots for sexual harassment claims. In 2006, there were over 12,000 official claims of sexual harrassment to the EEOC, and this doesn’t even include the women and men who were harassed but never reported it. I would call this type of behavior sexual misconduct.
They Sell Drugs
The word ‘thug’ kind of goes hand in hand with drug sales. Images of deviants passing baggies and vials of crack, coke, and heroin to lowly addicts come to mind when we think of street thugs. How can they do this to their community? a person will say, but then the same person uttering those words will pull a cigarette out of the pack and light it up!
Big Tobacco sells a drug, cigarettes, that is considered legal by our government. They probably have the best distribution system in the modern day world, selling a product daily that people get addicted to and die from. It has been proven that cigarettes directly cause various forms of cancer and disease. Some consumers buy and smoke two, three packs and more of these cancer causing agents per day. They can’t wait even a few minutes for their next “hit.” Just as a drug dealer keeps the crackhead supplied on the streets, Big Tobacco keeps smokers supplied. So how can they do this to their community?
Fast food giants knowingly sell food that is drenched with fat and grease to adults and children on a daily basis. It was recently revealed that a major fast food corporation, McDonalds, had been frying their delicious french fries in harmful Trans Fat oil in American stores, but not in certain other countries because, according to them, American’s prefer the taste. I’m sure those same Americans don’t prefer clogged arteries, stroke, and heart disease.
Let’s discuss another form of drug distributed legally by major corporations- pharmaceuticals. These drugs are known to have various side effects, and can even make people sicker than they were originally in some cases. An example is the anti-psychotic drug Zyprexa which was claimed to cause diabetes or high blood glucose in some users. The company that manufactured this drug, Eli Lilly, ended up paying $1 billion in settlements to those affected. In 2005, there were over 17,000 liability lawsuits filed against pharmaceutical companies, the most of any industry, yet still they rise.
Some people even become addicted to certain types of drugs, specifically painkillers like Oxycontin and Percocets, that can even kill if they are used improperly. The pharmaceutical industry has an even more complex and genius distribution system, because they distribute through some of the most trusted members of our communities-doctors. Doctors receive visits from Pharmaceutical reps on a regular basis, offering them compensation and benefits if they push this or that drug to their patients. This is nothing more than a legal and more structured form of drug dealing.
They are Bad to and for Women
Thugs are notoriously thought of as men who treat their women with disrespect. They objectify women in videos, cheat on them, and in the worst cases physically abuse or even kill their girlfriends.
The porn industry has been in existence almost as long as the oldest profession (prostitution). There are major corporations who have made all of their money from objectifying women in videos, magazines, and media. Is it considered respectful because these women are employed by a corporation, inside of a building, posing and having sex, and not on the street selling the flesh?
Street thugs don’t have a monopoly on cheating either. Heidi Fleiss, the Hollywood Madam, and Newt Gingrich have shown us that.
Ted Bundy. Scott Peterson. Jeffrey MacDonald. These are all men who were considered normal, white collar, professional men. They were all convicted of heinous crimes against women.
Why do women date street thugs, when they beat women and treat them like trash? True, but tell me, just how many “high class” women married to corporate thugs are enjoying large mansions and throwing lavish tea parties, but living with a complete monster?
Random Comparisons in Summary
Street thug tappers flash and flaunt their money, fame, and status in music videos… Corporate thugs flash and flaunt their money, fame, and status in annual company reports and nationwide commercials.
Street thugs use addicts, naïve women, innocents, and even kids to further their cause of making money from drugs and prostitution rings…Corporate thugs use addicts, naïve women, innocents, and even kids to increase their profit margins and make more money from their harmful products.
Street thugs don’t care about anyone but themselves and their family. It is all about the cash and the “bling”…Corporate thugs don’t care about anyone but themselves and their family. It is all about the bottomline and stock options, their most treasured form of “bling.”
Most modern day corporate leaders are no better than drug dealers and common street thugs-the only difference is that the business these white collar thugs are in is considered legal. Legal, but still immoral due to the negative effect their products have on consumers-cigarettes, greasy fast food, and pharmaceuticals that cause long term damage.
So the next time you turn up your nose at that thug on the corner, don’t stop there. Next, turn that same nose to the sky and look at the 100 story corporate building in the distance. It’s crawling with them.
BBC News Online, The psychopaths in suits, By Joanna Hill-Tout, 1/14/2004
WebMD Medical News, How Much Trans Fat in Those Fries? It Depends Where in the World You Buy Them, Study Shows, Miranda Hitti, 4/12/2006
USATODAY, More drugs get slapped with lawsuits, 8/23/2006