I can tolerate all sorts of annoying behavior, but sanctimony sets my hair on fire. It makes my teeth itch. It grates on me. I want to walk up to the sanctimonious twit who thinks he’s morally superior to the rest of us and politely tell him to “Please, if you don’t mind … Shut Up!”
At the moment I’m thinking of those corporate CEOs – including the commissioner of Major League baseball — who worked their way up the system all the way to the corner office, but who “After long careers in which they seemed happy to let their talents propel them to unimaginable wealth, they’ve now discovered that the society that elevated them was founded in evil,” as Gerard Baker elegantly puts it in his Wall Street Journal column.
He wrote those words soon after the CEOs of Delta Airlines, Coca Cola and other giants of the corporate world weighed in on Georgia’s new voting law, which they claimed would restrict voting rights, mainly for African Americans.
But if these corporate titans really believe the society that elevated them was infected with “systemic racism” then shouldn’t they do the right thing, the honorable thing – something I for one have long suggested: Hand over their jobs to a qualified minority.
“But instead of doing the honorable thing, and stepping down in favor of some less-privileged underling, they demonstrate a commitment to the faith by denouncing others,” writes Baker. “Here you have the essence of the new faith and morals of the woke classes, the truly privileged people in our society: I’m not to blame, you understand; it’s all those other white folk.”
Being a CEO means never having to say you’re sorry – not when you have liberals in the media and the Democratic establishment on your side – and you’re taking on conservative Republicans on the matter of race.
“There’s no need to rehearse all the arguments about the law,” says Baker. “Suffice it to say it expands opportunities to vote well beyond what existed even two years ago and that it is more permissive than the prevailing laws in many blue states.
“But to some religions facts are irrelevant, and bowing to the pressure from the media and Democrats, these titans of private enterprise quickly submitted to the collective will.”
There’s something unsettling in our culture, something that has to do with powerful people not saying what’s actually true or false (about voting laws or anything else), but saying what serves their purposes, saying what makes them look good, what will convince people (mostly themselves) that they’re not simply corporate executives focused on the bottom line, but that they’re much more than that, that they’re noble Americans who care oh so deeply about how terrible things are in the very same country that enabled them to make millions of dollars a year.
Maybe it’s always been this way, but the high-minded rhetoric seems more prevalent now that the “woke” culture is in full bloom, when accusing the other side of racism (directly or otherwise) is not something that’s likely to get you in trouble – but quite the opposite.
“The rush by corporate leaders to denounce Georgia’s new voting law will rank in infamy as one of the most cowardly, cynical and socially destructive moves in modern American history,” writes Gerard Baker.
The American people will put up with a lot, but asking them to put up with both the cowardice of those CEOs and their sanctimony – is simply asking too much.